Submitted by Chris Kucera
This weekend, we had our Service Unit-wide Bridging event. We bridged girls into every level from Daisies to Ambassadors. As detailed in a previous blog post, we awarded the Bronze Cross. Both the girls bridging into Seniors gave heartfelt speeches in front of about 80 people. While Samantha Kucera meant her words for me and her other leaders, I wanted to share her inspired words with all leaders as I believe they have meaning for us all:
To all my leaders you are special and wonderful and this is just for you.
You do not have any more spare time or energy than we do, you all work full time, juggle your families, your schedule and try to keep it all together as best you can. The only difference between you and other people is that you believe in what Girl Scouting has to offer. So much so, that you contribute your time, your miles, and your talents to help girls grow in Scouting.
You complete authorization forms, budgets, and registrations, and fill your house with boxes of paperwork that we will never see. You are required to take many hours of training as well as attend various meetings so that you can provide a variety of programs which meet the needs and interests of every individual girl. You try to involve parents who want you to understand that they do not have the time to drive on outings or help at meetings. You rejoice at the generosity of others. Sometimes you find yourselves going in too many directions, and you run out of steam. Time slips by, but that doesn’t mean you do not care. So many evenings you spend on the phone, seeking advice and support from other leaders when problems occur. “How do I run a journey in a day?” “How many badges do I need to order?” “Can I run a multiage group?”
Your dining tables are covered with bits of rope, menus, trip permits, craft supplies, paper work and badges for each and every girl in the troop. Sometimes you feel unappreciated. Yet, these girls can fill you with pride at their determination and accomplishments. Their smiles light up a room; and when they say “Thank You”, it makes it all worth it.
You help us build relationships. Some struggle more than others. Considerate, loyal, helpful, friendly… is encouraged by the Girl Scout Promise and Law. And sometimes you too must learn these lessons over and over again with us. But you are willing to keep learning. Please be patient if we appear distracted or frustrated or overwhelmed at times. You provide us with encouragement and offer your help. You keep us in your thoughts.
You are, after all, mentors…role models…leaders. Volunteers who have taken an oath to give these girls, your girls, the most precious gift you have to offer- the gift of time.
There is only one thing left to say: thank you. I owe my success to all of you.
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