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Gold Award Girl Scout named 2020 Truman Scholar

Congratulations to Gold Award Girl Scout and National Young Woman of Distinction Sarah Greichen! She has been named a 2020 Truman Scholar and is among 62 outstanding college students chosen from 55 institutions nationwide. The Truman Scholarship is the premier graduate scholarship for aspiring public service leaders in the United States.

Sarah, a. current student at Colorado State University, is the founder, board chair, and CEO of Score A Friend. The Denver native founded the organization to help her twin brother, who has an autism spectrum disorder, find a friend. In addition to honors from Girl Scouts of Colorado and Girl Scouts of the USA, Sarah was also given the 2016 Outstanding Youth Award for National Philanthropy Day in Colorado. She was a speaker at both the 2019 PEAK Parent Center National Conference on Inclusive Education and the 2018 Colorado Social and Emotional Learning Forum. Alongside rock band NEEDTOBREATHE, Sarah is featured in the Pass It On campaign, highlighting the value of inclusion. She majors in corporate finance, investment analysis, and marketing, with a minor in entrepreneurship. She serves on the CSU College of Business Dean’s Student Leadership Council, as an ambassador for the Entrepreneurship Institute, and is an honors student. She earned first place in both the national Startup Summer Pitch Competition and the OtterBox Ethics Challenge. Sarah is an aspiring public policy attorney and social entrepreneur with a lifelong passion for making the world a more inclusive place for people of all abilities.

For 2020, the Truman Foundation reviewed 773 files from 316 institutions. Students were nominated by their institution based on their records of leadership, public service, and academic achievement. Read more about the 2020 Truman Scholarship Finalists here.

Each new Truman Scholar receives up to $30,000 for graduate study. Scholars also receive priority admission and supplemental financial aid at some premier graduate institutions, leadership training, career and graduate school counseling, and special internship opportunities within the federal government. Recipients must be U.S. citizens, have outstanding leadership potential and communication skills, demonstrate academic excellence, and be committed to careers in government or the nonprofit sector.

The Truman Foundation was created by Congress in 1975 as the living memorial to President Truman and the presidential monument to public service. The Foundation’s mission is premised on the belief that a better future relies on attracting to public service the commitment and sound judgment of bright, outstanding Americans. In fact, it was this belief that led President Truman, when approached by a bipartisan group of admirers near the end of his life, to encourage Congress to create a living memorial devoted to this purpose, rather than a traditional brick-and-mortar monument. For more than forty years, the Truman Foundation has fulfilled that mission: inspiring and supporting Americans from diverse backgrounds and from across the United States to public service.

For more information, please contact Truman Foundation Executive Secretary Terry Babcock-Lumish at (202)656-6386 or terrybl@truman.gov.

 

Multi-level Troop 65659 starts blog for and by people experiencing homelessness

Submitted by Jessica Spangler

Metro Denver

Denver

Girl Scout Cadette Elizabeth completed the “Think Like an Engineer” Journey with the help of her multi-level troop. She planned a blog to help improve the lives of people experiencing homelessness in the Denver Metro area. First, they used the Design Thinking Process (identify the problem, brainstorm, design, and test) to make a life vest for a dog,  camp cabin, and model elephant prosthetic. Next, they identified the causes of community problems with the question “But why?” They identified the problem they wanted to address: people experiencing homelessness . The girls came up with many questions about the problem. They learned that in 2019, 5,755 people were living in shelters or on the streets in the seven-county region and 946 people were staying in “unsheltered” locations, such as outside in tents, parks, vehicles, or underpasses.

Elizabeth and her troop thought making a blog and a comic to educate and inspire were both good ideas, so they chose to do both. They chose to make a blog with their comics to advocate for the un-housed in our community to help create understanding and compassion. Her idea was that if people learned more about how homelessness can happen, why it continues, and what is needed, the whole community, including people experiencing homelessness, will benefit from the knowledge being shared.

To make the project sustainable, the girls wanted individuals experiencing homelessness themselves to be able to contribute to the blog. The troop leader contacted The Delores Project, which provides safe, comfortable shelter and services for unaccompanied women and transgender individuals experiencing homelessness. The Delores Project staff was delighted to learn about the blog and how individuals could share their experiences and feelings anonymously. Individuals can contribute by commenting on one of the girls’ comics, or by working with a staff member to submit a blog entry of their own.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

 

 

Troop 65659 honors Hometown Heroes

Submitted by Jessica Spangler

Metro Denver

Denver

Multi-level Troop 65659 voted for the Colorado Animal Welfare League as their Hometown Hero for 2020. Colorado Animal Welfare League (CAWL) is a 501(c)(3) animal rescue organization founded with the mission to protect homeless animals in Colorado and the surrounding states of Nebraska, Kansas, Wyoming, and New Mexico. Their goal is to advance the awareness of the need for spaying and neutering our pets to reduce overpopulation. CAWL’s mobile spay/neuter clinic, the SNOW Mobile, is taken to rural areas with limited veterinary resources, inner-city areas, and Indian reservations where spaying and neutering will only happen if it is nearly free and comes to them. They work with local vets to provide the spaying and neutering service at no cost to the public.

The troop was very impressed by the work CAWL does to control pet overpopulation by spaying and neutering for free in areas where it would not otherwise happen. As an all-volunteer organization, CAWL is truly going above and beyond to help animals. CAWL was very happy to receive several cases of cookies for volunteers to enjoy!

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Older girl volunteer opportunity at Daisy Flower Garden

The Daisy Flower Garden Journey planned for Sunday, May 17, 2020 at the Denver Botanic Gardens has been canceled. Thanks to everyone who volunteered to help! If we are able to reschedule this event, we will let you know. 

Love to work with Girl Scout Daisies? We’re looking for you! Girl Scout Cadettes, Seniors, Ambassadors, and approved adult volunteers are invited to run activity stations at our Daisy Flower Garden Journey at the Denver Botanic Gardens on Sunday, May 17, 2020.  We need volunteers for a morning shift (8 – 11:30 a.m.) and afternoon shift (11 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.). All volunteers will get free entry into the Denver Botanic Gardens for the day, so come early or stay after your volunteer shift to enjoy the Gardens. All supplies for activity stations will be provided by GSCO. Sign up online: https://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/en/events-repository/2020/older_girl_volunteer.html

This is a great way to earn Program Aide hours, hours for your Community Service Bar, Service to Girl Scouting Bar, or service hours for school. Adult volunteers must be approved, background-checked Girl Scout volunteers to meet GSCO and the Denver Botanic Gardens’ volunteer guidelines. All girls volunteering must be accompanied by an approved, background-checked Girl Scout volunteer and adult to girl ratios for events must be met.

This sign-up will close on Wednesday, May 6.

Questions? Email aimee.artzer@gscolorado.org

OAC April 2020 environmental service projects: Registration NOW open

Spring is almost here and we are celebrating with the Outdoor Adventure Club’s annual environmental service projects! Event registration is NOW OPEN and closes on April 9, 2020 (or when full).

At these events, we will spend our morning doing environmental service projects, which may include trail maintenance, planting, invasive species removal, and park beautification. In the afternoon, we will provide some environmental education workshops, go hiking, and play fun nature games. Visit the links below for specific project details, timing, registration links, and more information for each location.

Cost for all events is $10 / girl and open to both OAC Explorer (6th grade) and Trailblazer (7th – 12th grade) groups.

Questions? Email inquiry@gscolorado.org

Gold Award Girl Scout: Fiona Goe, Denver, “The Informed Voters Project”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

My Gold Award addressed the lack of informed voters in my high school and community. I created a survey that helped the survey taker understand if they are most closely aligned with the Republican, Democrat, or Independent political party. Through my research, I found that uninformed voters consistently vote off of single-issues like abortion or gun rights/control, yet they may not be voting for the candidate or party that will represent the majority of their beliefs. Being an informed voter takes a lot of research, and knowing which political party you align with is a good place to start.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

Each person who takes the survey learns with which major political party they most closely identify. Many of my peers that took the survey had a preconceived idea of the political party that best represented their views, yet the survey results told a different story. One version of my survey focused on candidates for the Denver mayoral election. My grandpa had one candidate in mind. However, after he took my survey, he was surprised to find that his chosen candidate did not represent the majority of his views. The same thing happened when I presented my survey to the League of Women Voters.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

My project is sustainable through the Civics department at my high school. Civics is a required class, which means every student at East High School beginning with school year 2020 – 21 will take my survey as an upperclassmen.  Each junior and senior class consists of 500-600 students.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

I created a website to house the survey along with a process of understanding the political party with which you most closely align and information about how to move forward with becoming an informed voter. It can be accessed no matter where you are in the world. I also emailed and asked NCSL (National Conference of State Legislatures) and FairVote, two national organizations, to ask if they would be interested in promoting my survey/website. Unfortunately, they were unable to make that happen.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned that I am able to assemble a team, and tackle a project that I truly care about. I also learned the importance of perseverance. There were times when I felt like my project was at a dead end. I am so glad that I didn’t give up.  It is an unbelievable accomplishment to finish your Gold Award; I am so proud! I have gained the confidence to ask people for help. I have always wanted to prove to people that I can do anything on my own. Yet, the reality with a big project like this, is that you can’t do it on your own, and your team is there to help you every step of the way.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

Earning my Gold Award will give me a leg up against other candidates when I am applying for  college scholarships. My Gold Award is an accumulation of everything that I have learned and done as a Girl Scout over the last 12 years. I now am part of a prestigious club of Gold Award Girl Scouts, which I will be able to put on my resumé.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

I have been thinking about earning my Gold Award since I was 11-years-old. My troop emphasized the importance of earning higher awards, and so while I didn’t know if it was possible, I always wanted to earn my Gold Award and have a legacy of my years as a Girl Scout. Completing my Gold Award put all the skills that Girl Scouts has taught me into action. Every girl has learned how to dream big, be a leader, and persevere through their time in Girl Scouts, and earning a Gold Award uses that knowledge.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)?

Earning my Gold Award helped me become a go-getter because I saw a surplus of uninformed voters among my peers and I successfully found a solution. I was also an innovator because with the help of my team, I created an original survey for the public to use.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication, and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org

Empty cookie packages needed for Daisy event

UPDATE: The Daisy Flower Garden Journey planned for Sunday, May 17, 2020 at the Denver Botanic Gardens has been canceled. If we are able to reschedule this event, we will let you know. In the meantime, if you’re able to hang on/keep collecting empty cookie packages, please do. GSCO can still use them for future projects even if this event cannot be rescheduled.

 

Girl Scouts of Colorado’s annual Daisy Flower Garden event at the Denver Botanic Gardens is right around the corner! We are collecting empty Girl Scout Cookie packages (cardboard packages only) for an upcycled craft at the event and would love your help with the collection. All varieties in cardboard packages are accepted, and packages should be empty and flattened.

Troops in the Metro Denver region, you can bring your empty packages to your next service unit meeting and your volunteer support specialist will bring them to the Denver office for you.

We need about 300 empty packages. This blog will be updated when we have collected enough.

Questions? Email aimee.artzer@gscolorado.org.

Girl Scout Day with the Colorado Rockies

Join us for Girl Scout Day with the Colorado Rockies on Sunday, August 23, 2020 at Coors Field in Denver. All Girl Scouts, family, and friends are invited. Cheer on the Rockies as they take on the Los Angeles Dodgers. All Girl Scouts attending are invited to participate in a pre-game parade and will receive a special event patch.

The game starts at 1:10 p.m. Girl Scouts participating in the parade should arrive 1.5 – 2 hours prior to game time to prepare. Detailed information about the parade outlined HERE: 40962780_2020_girl_scout_day_parade_information

To purchase tickets, visit rockies.com/scout and select “Girl Scouts of Colorado”.

Ticket prices vary depending on seats chosen.

Questions? Email aimee.artzer@gscolorado.org OR hannah.browne@rockies.com

 

While dad is deployed, uncle steps up

Submitted by Maria Casaverde Marin

Metro Denver

Denver

Francesca’s dad, Kenny, is one of her biggest cookie sales supporters. Every year since her first year in Girl Scouts, he has helped her with booths and door-to-door sales in Denver, although he lived in Colorado Springs.

Kenny is a staff sergeant for the Air Force, and is currently deployed to South Korea.

Our troop tries to make the Girl Scout Cookie business a family affair and we hand out special patches when a dad helps their daughter with her sales.

Francesca was disappointed that she might not be able to earn this patch this year, but her uncle stepped up to help her with booths when she heard her story.

She now keeps a yellow ribbon on her vest to remember dad during cookie sales and is very grateful for uncles and family who step up to fill in while she waits for dad to come back safe.

Dads are an important part of the Girl Scouts of Colorado Cookie Team. That’s why we honor dads who help Girl Scouts all across Colorado meet their goals. Tell us about what makes your dad an awesome Cookie Dad and he could win a cool prize. 

ZAP! POW! Superhero Day with the Girl Scouts

Join Girl Scouts of Colorado staff for a fun-filled superhero day! We will be hosting programming that is open to girls in grades 2-6 on Aurora Public School’s no school days. The program will run 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. with supervised childcare provided by Girl Scouts of Colorado staff members.

Register here to save your spot!  

Caregivers should arrive a few minutes early to complete paperwork. The $25 cost includes: supervised activities including creating comic art, superhero yoga, learning about comic books, watching the Kim Possible movie (G); morning and afternoon snacks (participants should bring a lunch); and a 2020 Girl Scouts Membership that allows girls to participate in troops, cookie sales, camp, and more.

Parents of participating girls must sign a Parent Permission for Girl Scout Activity form, and a Girl Health History form. (Please click on the links to download the forms.)

Contact Bambi Dingman bambi.dingman@gscolorado.org, 303-607-4857 with any questions. If you have any trouble completing registration, please contact inquiry@gscolorado.org or 877-404-5708.