Tag Archives: Council News

A Message from Stephanie Foote

Girl Scout community,

Everything has changed: Your daily routine, your physical connections, for many people their ability to make a living, and for many others their health and well-being. At this time of global crisis, we lean (virtually and figuratively) on one another. The Girl Scout community has a solid history of coming together, of taking the lead when things get tough, of showing compassion for those in need and being resilient when facing challenges.

This pandemic is no different. We’ve seen troops and Girl Scouts staying connected virtually, trying new things at home and earning badges, and dreaming up ways to help her community through this crisis.

I’m so proud of the Girl Scout Movement – the caring, ingenuity, resourcefulness, and innovation is evident at all levels. From the Girl Scouts who tied white ribbons around trees at Littleton Adventist Hospital in a show of support for health care workers, to the troop that set up a no-contact sandwich stand (including Girl Scout cookies) in Rocky Ford for truckers to grab a bite and know we appreciate their work, acts of kindness like these have been bright spots in this crisis.

Our staff and volunteers have pivoted quickly to provide the Girl Scout Leadership Experience virtually. Our team at Sky High Ranch had a 2-week virtual spring break camp ready to go the first Monday after schools closed. It attracted more than 500 participants from 30 states and three different countries! We quickly put together resources to guide parents and troop leaders in badge and patch activities that can be done at home. Our virtual programming task force is planning much more to come. While many organizations cannot offer their activities online, Girl Scouts can be a stable, consistent support for girls and their families. This week, GSUSA launched a new, interactive website to bring the fun and exploration of Girl Scouts home when we cannot meet in-person.

Taking care of business

Our physical offices are closed but our entire staff is working remotely, ensuring that our volunteers and members have the support they need during this time. The Girl Scouts of Colorado emergency response team had a plan in place to make sure we were prepared. Because girl safety is always our top priority, we canceled all in-person events beginning March 13 through May 17, and set up all employees with telecommute access in February. As good stewards of our resources, GSCO is able to ensure that all of our staff will be paid normally during this time and they have the tools they need to perform work remotely throughout Colorado.

We feel lucky that our Girl Scout Cookie Program wrapped up just before COVID-19 arrived in Colorado and we’re hopeful that troops will begin putting their cookie proceeds to use helping their communities, celebrating with one another, and trying new things as soon as this crisis has passed.

In addition we have:

  • Extended the deadline for Women of Distinction nominations to April 6.
  • Extended the deadline for volunteer award nominations to April 30.
  • Extended the deadline for bridging Girl Scouts to complete Highest Awards projects to Dec. 31.
  • Continued to take and fulfill online orders at our retail shop.
  • Kept abreast of new federal laws and how they affect our workforce.

We are working on:

  • Developing meaningful, virtual ways to honor Highest Awards recipients this spring and considering when/how we might honor Gold Award Girl Scouts in-person.
  • Looking at rescheduling some large scale spring events (such as Daisy Flower Garden and statewide bridging) to the fall.
  • Creating additional virtual resources for current members and to show non-members what Girl Scouting is all about.
  • Updating our spring renewal timeline and incentive program.
  • Evaluating whether it will be safe to hold summer camp.

I have joined GSUSA and other philanthropic leaders in lobbying our U.S. Senators, asking for their support of nonprofits in the economic relief and stimulus package.

I have no doubt that our society will come out of this forever changed. I know that Girl Scouts will rise to the challenges and continue to build girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. We’re all in this together.

Stephanie Foote

Girl Scouts at home

Everything has changed: Your daily routine, your physical connections, for many people their ability to make a living, and for many others their health and well-being. At this time of global crisis, we lean (virtually and figuratively) on one another. The Girl Scout community has a solid history of coming together, of taking the lead when things get tough, of showing compassion for those in need and being resilient when facing challenges.

We’ve seen troops and Girl Scouts staying connected virtually, trying new things at home and earning badges, and dreaming up ways to help her community through this crisis.

If your troop or girl is in a position to continue their Girl Scout experience, we’ve compiled a number of ways to support that experience virtually.

Check out the new, interactive Girl Scouts at Home website and Girl Scouts of Colorado’s web page highlighting council patches that can be done at home.

GSCO has developed a list of activities/service projects that can be done at home and may even help girls earn a badge or patch!

Please note, this resource is not inclusive of every activity Girl Scouts can do at home. Check out the complete list of Girl Scout Badges and Journeys online and use the online Badge Explorer to understand basic requirements.

Watch our social media channels, website, and blog for more virtual programming opportunities in the near future!

Our first-ever VIRTUAL Girl Scout Spirit Week

Show your Girl Scout Spirit Sunday, April 5– Saturday April 11, 2020! Each day will have a special theme and you can join the fun by sharing your videos, photos, comments, etc. on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram. Twitter and Instagram users, be sure to tag @GSColo in your posts and use #GSColo.

  • Sunday, April 5: Favorite Girl Scout T-shirt or sweatshirt
  • Monday, April 6: Favorite badge or earned award
  • Tuesday, April 7: Favorite memory
  • Wednesday, April 8: Favorite Skill
  • Thursday, April 9: Favorite Song
  • Friday, April 10: Favorite Trip
  • Saturday, April 11: Favorite Patch

New “Stand and Be Counted” patch!

Girl Scouts of Colorado is thrilled to launch our “Stand and Be Counted”patch in honor of the 2020 Census! Earn this patch to discover why we count everyone, what happens afterward, and how you can become involved.

Learn more

Highest Awards

Now is also the perfect time to start working on requirements for your Bronze, Silver, or Gold Award! The Highest Awards program will be adding a few additional virtual trainings in the next few weeks while everyone is at home.

Also, the award project completion deadline for bridging girls has been extended to Dec. 31.

Learn more

 

Help GSCO meet our goal for the Carla Montana Distinguished Military Veteran Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund

We are so close to reaching our goal, but we need your help!

On March 17, 2020 Girl Scouts of Colorado announced Elba Barr, Army Veteran and Lifetime Girl Scout, had issued a matching gift challenge to raise $10,000 needed to create the Carla Montana Distinguished Military Veteran Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund.  Elba will match up to $2,500 for gifts received between now and April 4.  Thanks to the generosity of Girl Scout supporters we are almost there, needing only $425 more. GSCO hopes to announce the completion of this by April 4, during the Month of the Military Child, but can’t do it without you.

Make a donation today and invite family and friends to join the effort!

We look forward to sharing our progress toward this goal with you soon as well as additional details on the scholarships it will provide to Colorado Girl Scouts.

NEW INFORMATION about The Carla Montana Distinguished Military Veteran Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund

Girl Scouts of Colorado (GSCO) is excited to announce The Carla Montana Distinguished Military Veteran Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund!

The Carla Montana Distinguished Military Veteran Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund honors its namesake and the things she valued most. Carla grew up in a military family where service to one’s country and friendship to sister Girl Scouts were important values. She traveled extensively and had many meaningful experiences both personally and professionally, but her Girl Scout memories were among her most cherished.

The timing of this announcement coincides with the Month of the Military Child, which was established in 1986 and has been celebrated every April since. GSCO is proud of our commitment to military families and will be joining Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) by supporting local events in honor of the Month of the Military Child throughout April 2020.

We are inviting Girl Scout supporters to participate in a challenge to raise a minimum of $10,000 by April 4, 2020, allowing GSCO to complete the endowment started with a generous donation from Carla’s family.

And to help get this started, all gifts to the Carla Montana Fund received between March 13 – April 4, 2020 will be matched, up to $2,500, by Elba Barr, Army Veteran and Lifetime Girl Scout!

Distributions from the endowment will provide Colorado Girl Scouts from military families with scholarships enabling them to experience the learning, joy, and camaraderie acquired through travel and adventure. Additional details of the scholarship process will be made available once the endowment has been established. More information and online donations

Doing our part to prevent the spread of COVID-19

Following the advice of the Centers for Disease Control and GSUSA, we are extending our cancellation of all Girl Scouts of Colorado-sponsored, in-person programming and events for eight weeks, through May 17, in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19.

The current recommendation is to cancel all gatherings of more than 10 people. Unfortunately, that means we will cancel all Volunteer Appreciation events and Highest Awards celebrations, as well as several high-profile partner events. But, we are looking at ways to provide virtual programming, online celebrations, and Girl Scouting-at-home resources.

As good Girl Scouts, we’re using this crisis as an opportunity to try new things and new ways to deliver the Girl Scout Leadership Experience. Already, we’re hosting a “virtual spring camp” on our Sky High Ranch Instagram (@sky_high_ranch) and had nearly 400 girls join in today from across Colorado, 30 other states, and 3 countries! Watch our social channels, website, and blog for more virtual programming opportunities in the near future!

All Girl Scouts of Colorado staff are working remotely through May 17 and the retail shop is closed. However, the GSCO Leadership Team and Emergency Response Team are meeting regularly and will continue to assess cancellations and work status as we move through this crisis. We will keep you informed of any status changes.

At this point, we have made no decisions regarding summer camp cancellations. We will continue to gather information to make decisions in the best interest of our members and staff as we move forward.

It has never been more important to remember that Girl Scouting is not just what we do, it’s about who we are.

You are a Girl Scout whether or not you attend troop meetings. Now more than ever, we must all follow the Girl Scout Promise and Law. We must be responsible for our own health and for our possible impact on the health of others, and prioritize social distancing as much as possible.

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we all work together to ensure the health and safety of our communities. We love seeing how our Girl Scout community takes the lead and comes together in times of need – even when we cannot be together physically! If your troop is hosting a virtual gathering or you have ideas on Girl Scout activities or service that can be done at home, please share at gscoblog.org/share.

Working together to keep our Girl Scout community safe

Because the safety and well-being of girls is always our top priority, Girl Scouts of Colorado has decided to follow the actions of area school districts and the Colorado High School Sports Association. All staff-run and in-person activities for girls and adults are canceled effective immediately until at least April 6, 2020. We will offer refunds or reschedule when possible.

The status of events, activities, and programs being managed by external partners will be determined by each individual partner. Please contact the partner directly regarding questions about their events, programs, and activities.

Reservations for troops and outside users of Girl Scouts of Colorado properties are also canceled beginning Monday, March 16, 2020 until at least April 6, 2020.

We are advising troops to follow their school’s guidelines. If their school is closed or not allowing after-school activities, then troops should not meet. Troops hosting events at other locations should use their best judgement and exercise an abundance of caution.

We will continue to monitor the actions of local school districts, Colorado Department of Health and Environment, and GSUSA, and reevaluate as needed.

During this time, GSCO staff will be working remotely and we will do everything we can to allow for virtual Girl Scout activities to continue and provide troop leaders with ways to guide their girls through activities online when possible.

You can use these sources to ensure you stay up to date on the latest information and best practices for coronavirus and communicable disease prevention and management:

Attend Summit Sister’s Camp

Update as of March 20, 2020: This camp has been rescheduled for August 27 – 30, 2020.

Girl Scouts of Colorado is proud to once again offer one of our adult volunteers a space at the Summit Sister’s Camp run by Women’s Wilderness. Women’s Wilderness is hosting this camp at Meadow Mountain Ranch June 25 – 28, 2020. Women’s Wilderness’s mission is to strengthen the courage, confidence, and leadership qualities of girls and women through the challenge and support of group wilderness and community based experiences. Summit Sisters focuses on a deep nature connection, connection to your body, inspiration and calling, and competence and outdoor skills. Presentations at Summit Sisters this year will include: The Call of the Earth, Self Confidence Formula, Wildlife Tracking in the Rockies, Inner Beauty Workshop, and so much more. For more information about Summit Sisters, please visit their website at https://www.womenswilderness.org/summit-sisters/

GSCO will choose one adult volunteer for a free space at the Summit Sister’s Camp – a $399 value! All meals, lodging, and programming are provided. To apply for this opportunity, use this link and complete the questionnaire no later than May 29 at 11:59 p.m. All applicants will be contacted on June 5 after the winner of the grant has been chosen. Applicants must have a current or lifetime membership with Girl Scouts of Colorado.

The Carla Montana – Distinguished Military Veteran – Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund

Girl Scouts of Colorado is excited to announce The Carla Montana – Distinguished Military Veteran – Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund honoring its namesake, Girl Scouts, military service, and adventures through travel.

Carla grew up in a military family where service to one’s country and friendship to sister Girl Scouts were important values. Carla traveled extensively and had notable experiences both personally and professionally, but her Girl Scout memories were among her most cherished.

We are inviting Girl Scout supporters to participate in a challenge to raise a minimum of $10,000 by April 4, 2020, allowing GSCO to complete the endowment started with a generous donation from Carla’s family.  Click here for more information and  to make your donation online. Distributions from the endowment will provide Colorado Girl Scouts with scholarships enabling them to experience the learning, joy, and camaraderie acquired through travel and adventure. Additional details of the scholarship process will be made available once the endowment has been established.

The timing of this announcement coincides with the Month of the Military Child, which was established in 1986 and has been celebrated every April since. Girl Scouts of Colorado is proud of our commitment to military families and will be joining Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) by supporting local events in honor of the Month of the Military Child throughout April 2020.

We look forward to sharing with you the success of this campaign and the stories of the adventure it brings!

GSCO regional office in Colorado Springs to host open house

This event is cancelled as of March 13, 2020.

On Wednesday, March 18, 2020, the Girl Scouts of Colorado regional office in Colorado Springs will host its annual open house at its office, 5353 N. Union Blvd., Suite 101. The event takes place from 5:30 to 7 p.m., and hors d’oeuvres and beverages will be served. This is open to the public and is meant for people who are not affiliated with Girl Scouts to see and hear first-hand what Girl Scouts are doing in the region.

Guests will hear about our local events and activities, hear from a Gold Award Girl Scouts, and more! You won’t want to miss this chance to introduce your friends to Girl Scouts in a community-friendly event.

GSCO regional office in Colorado Springs to host open house

On Tuesday, February 18, 2020, the Girl Scouts of Colorado regional office in Colorado Springs will host its annual open house at its office, 5353 N. Union Blvd., Suite 101. The event takes place from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m., and hors d’oeuvres and beverages will be served. This is open to the public and is meant for people who are not affiliated with Girl Scouts to see and hear first-hand what Girl Scouts are doing in the region.

Guests will hear about our local events and activities, hear from a Gold Award Girl Scouts, sample Girl Scout Cookies, and more! You won’t want to miss this chance to introduce your friends to Girl Scouts in a community-friendly event.