News

  • Girl's Choice - ROUND TWO of voting has begun!

    12 Dec 2014

    The first round of voting for new outdoor badges has finished! Now, it's time for round two!

    The votes have been tallied and your voices have been heard. The next set of badges - one each for Brownies through Ambassadors - will be based on an Outdoor Recreation theme!

    Now is your chance to vote on the type of badge activities you will get to earn next year! Voting ends December 31st, so be sure to get your votes in!

    Which badge set appeals most to you? Check out the three choices below, and then go VOTE!

    Ready to take action? Girls, follow this link to cast your vote!

    The fall 2015 "Girls' Choice" badges will be announced on March 12, 2015. 

  • Girl Scouts Celebrates Human Rights Day!

    10 Dec 2014

    Repost from GS Blog

    Every December 10, the world celebrates Human Rights Day. Created in 1950, the mission is to bring attention to the need for basic human rights for all people. This year’s slogan, Human Rights 365, encompasses the idea that every day is Human Rights Day.

    Today for Human Rights Day, Girl Scouts is focusing on the importance of diversity in our movement. Diversity has been a core value of Girl Scouts since its founding in 1912. At a time of segregation and before laws promoting civil rights were passed, our founder, Juliette Gordon Low, ensured that African-American, American Indian and Hispanic girls were able to become Girl Scouts. She led efforts to make Girl Scouting available to girls who lived in rural and urban areas, to girls who were rich, middle class and poor, and to girls who were born in this country as well as immigrants.

    The foundation of diversity that Juliette Gordon Low established runs throughout Girl Scouts to this day. Our mission to build "girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place" extends to all girls of this nation. Our volunteers work every day to ensure that our outreach, volunteer systems and resources work toward making Girl Scoutin...

    Read Full Article ]
  • Work on your My Promise, My Faith Awards this holiday season!

    05 Dec 2014

    Since it’s the holiday season it is a great time to have girls work on their My Promise, My Faith Awards.

    The My Promise, My Faith Award is an award found within each grade level’s edition of the Girl’s Guide to Girl Scouting. Earning this award helps girls explore how Girl Scouting and their faith offer similar ideas about how to interact with the world around them—and how Girl Scouting can tie into their faiths. Girls can earn this national pin each year, it's easy! There are five steps to earning this award, check them out -

    Steps to earn the pin:

    1. Choose one line from the Girl Scout Law. Find a story, song, or poem from your faith with the same ideas. Talk with your family or friends about what that line of the Law and the story, song, or poem have in common.

    2. Find a woman in your own or another faith community. Ask her how she tries to use that line of the Law in her life.

    3. Gather three inspirational quotes by women that fit with that line of the Girl Scout Law. Put them where you can see them every day!

    4. Make something to remind you of what you’ve learned. It might be a drawing, painting, or poster. You could also make up a story or a skit.

    5. Keep the connection strong. Find out if your faith community offers a recognition program for Girl Scouts. Talk with your friends, family, or a group in your faith community about what you’ve learned about your faith and Gi...

    Read Full Article ]
  • Top Ten Reasons to Invite a Friend to Volunteer at Girl Scouts

    21 Nov 2014

    Here are the top ten reasons to invite a friend to volunteer with Girl Scouts TODAY…

    10.  There are LESS THAN 216 hours left to take advantage of the Volunteer Invite-a-Friend offer.

    9.  We’re trying to set a new record for onboarding volunteers in a single month! Help us recruit over 20 volunteers this month!

    8.  Who doesn’t love SHOPPING FOR GIRL SCOUT GEAR?! During the Volunteer Invite-a-Friend offer, when you invite a friend to volunteer with us, you’ll get a $50 coupon code to use at Girl Scouts’ Official Online Store.

    7.  Wouldn’t it be nice to have ONE MORE Girl Scout sister to share that box of Thin Mints with? As you count cookie money, of course…

    6.  There are nearly 18,000 Girl Scouts at Girl Scouts of West Central Florida… and another 30,000 girls nationwide who CAN’T WAIT to be Girl Scouts. Let’s get these girls involved in the ah-mazing activities we offer today!

    5.  Remember that time you sang silly Girl Scout songs until your girls got the giggles? EVERYONE could use some more giggles in their lives!

    4.  Picture your favorite Girl Scout memory. Maybe when it’s the time one of your Daisies realized that swimming wasn’t so scary with her Girl Scout sisters around… or maybe it’s the moment that your Junior found her voice and stood up to peer pressure… or maybe when you realized that without YOU, those moments may not have happened. Don’t you w...

    Read Full Article ]
  • Girls---make your voices heard!

    07 Nov 2014

    Girl Scouts of West Central Florida is excited to share a special announcement from GSUSA:  

    Four outdoor badges are being added to program in fall 2015, and now through Nov. 30, girls can vote on the badges they will earn!

    GSUSA just announced this new, annual national voting process during the National Council Session at Girl Scout Convention. The four outdoor badges added to program in fall 2015 will include one each at the Brownie, Junior, Cadette and Senior levels. To determine which badges will be added, GSUSA is using a "Girls' Choice" process, meaning girls will take the lead on deciding which new badges will be created!

    This year, there will be two rounds of polling:

    1. First, between Oct. 31 - Nov. 30, girls can vote on which content area they're interested in within the outdoor category (i.e.: outdoor recreation, outdoor environment, or outdoor survival).
       
    2. Once GSUSA receives a majority vote on the content area, girls will vote Dec. 1-31 on the actual badge topic (for example, hiking, camping, trail blazing, etc.), based on their grade level in the coming year. 

    Then, the fall 2015 "Girls' Choice" badges will be announced on March 12, 2015.

    Ready to take action?

    Read Full Article ]
  • Four Reasons to Create a Runner

    25 Sep 2014

    Although I’m a relatively new runner, I still have learned some important lessons during my time as a marathon mom on the run. One thing I realized early on is the fact that my running inspires my kids to lead active, healthy lifestyles. With that one major component came four important points that makes running the healthiest gift I could give my three children.

    Running Builds Confidence

    No matter the distance from a fun run 5K to a marathon, there is something so rewarding about the physical and mental endurance it takes to cross the finish line.

    No matter how fast or slow of a runner you may be, running only takes moving one foot in front of the other. The simple act of moving forward makes you a runner and the self-determination it takes to finish a race will fill you with such elation and pride. No one but you and your efforts can offer you that self-confidence.

    Running Helps Sets Goals

    With running comes the need for setting goals, and training for a race takes weeks. Runners select a race and then begin the physical and mental process of training for that race. Whether it’s a new distance or a new PR (personal record) to set, runners constantly try to improve and it’s a noteworthy positive behavior we model for future runners.

    Support from Other Runners

    There is camaraderie among runners that only other runners know. Whether you are fast or slow, you toe the start line, try your best and your effo...

    Read Full Article ]
  • 10 Reasons You "Otter" Take Part in Fall Product Program!

    18 Sep 2014

    1. 2. 3. 4. 5! Essential Skills

    The Fall Product Program is a great introduction to running a business. When girls participates, they learn and practice the five skills:

    goal setting

    decision-making

    money management

    people skills

    business ethics

    6. Super Cool Rewards!

    Girls love getting the rewards as much as we love giving them. Great patches, gift cards, backpacks, T-shirts  and even a chance to win tickets to cool shows or a cruiser bike!

    7. Start Building Troop Funds NOW!

    It’s a long time until we kickoff our 2015 cookie program and there is too much cool stuff to do right now. The fall product program gives you early start-up money you need to fund the fun through the fall.

    8. Online Has Gotten Better!

    New for 2014! Girls can offer Photo Keepsakes to their family and friends along with the magazines through their online ordering platform. PLUS! Customers that live too far for personal delivery can order from 30 nut/candy items in the online store.

    9. Tasty New Offerings

    Read Full Article ]
  • Top 5 reasons why being a member of the MediaGirlz team is so AWESOME

    10 Sep 2014

    We've put together this short list of all of the super-awesome-fun reasons you should join the MediaGirlz team, check it out:

    1. You get to attend exclusive events and see behind-the-scenes you’ve never seen before



    2. You could be on TV!



    3. You get to meet and learn from professionals in all fields of public relations/media work – radio broadcasters, talk show hosts, professional athletes, reporters, news anchors – you name it!



    4. You make awesome new friends from all different communities in west central Florida!



    5. You learn lifelong skills that will help you – whether as a kid or an adult – such as: people skills, public speaking, writing, social media, and so much more!



    Sounds like fun, right? Here’s the great news: we will be holding a training and audition for the 2014-2015 Media...

    Read Full Article ]
  • 10 Reasons NOT to Volunteer with Girl Scouts

    05 Sep 2014

    Repost from Girl Scouts of Central Texas

    At Girl Scouts, one of the big reasons girls get to do such awesome things and learn so many amazing skills is because we have great volunteers who are willing to give their time and energy to building girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place. So, naturally, we’re always encouraging people to volunteer with us.

    But not today.

    This time, we’re giving you 10 reasons you might want to reconsider volunteering with Girl Scouts:

    10. You don’t want your community to improve.

    Girl Scouts are encouraged to observe their environment and the people in it to identify problems and to take action to solve them! Bronze, Silver and Gold Award projects serve the communities girls live in and improve the lives of others. You want none of this.

     

    9. You don’t think children are the future.


    Read Full Article ]
  • The State of Girls: Thriving or Surviving?

    04 Sep 2014

    Repost from GSUSA GS Blog

    The State of Girls is a series of first-of-its-kind reports by the Girl Scout Research Institute that examine girls’ health and well-being in the United States. These reports are based on current national statistical indicators focused on key issues such as health, safety, and educational achievement of girls, as well as demographic trends.

    In 2013, the national report, The State of Girls: Unfinished Business was released, finding that while progress has been made for girls in some areas such as educational attainment, many girls are being left behind. Particularly, African American and Hispanic girls face significant challenges in making successful transitions to adulthood.

    This current report, The State of Girls: Thriving or Surviving examines girls’ well-being across each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Each state is ranked based on a state index of girls’ well-being, which considers five indicators of girls’ well-being: Physical Health and Safety, Economic Well-Being, Education, Emotional Health, Extracurricular and Out-of-School Activities

    This report, which examines state-level data on girls’ well-being, finds that where girls live matters. Geographically, there are some clear differences i...

    Read Full Article ]
  • 5 Ways to Get Your Girl Ready for Kindergarten

    26 Aug 2014

    Repost from GSUSA GS Blog

    Pencils, backpacks, and school buses. New friends, new teachers and a brand new schedule every morning. Starting school brings a lot of change for both you and your daughter. But there are a few simple things you can do to help her walk through doors on her first day not only ready to learn, but with a big smile and a sense of confidence.

    From Girl Scouts For Adults, here are 5 ways to prepare her for a happy, safe (and fun) start to her first ever school year:

    1. A little independence goes a long way. This is especially important if your daughter has never been away from home all day. Start small. Work on your child’s ability to do basic physical things for themselves before school starts. Can she put on and take off shoes? Check. Zip up her coat? Check. Does she know how to navigate the bathroom independently at potty time? Check. And remember, tights are tough. So is anything with lots of complicated zips, buttons and snaps. Kindergarten is a place to play, run, climb and learn, so the fancy dress you bought last week might be best saved for your next special occasion rather than her first day of school.
    2. Get to know the school. Lots of schools set aside a day to let incoming ...

      Read Full Article ]
  • GirlSports: Building Leadership Through Fitness

    07 Jul 2014

    A common misconception in Girl Scouts is that we are all about cookies, camps and crafts. While we love these things – Girl Scouts embodies much more than that! How about leadership, fitness and health? Since the beginning of our organization’s time, Girl Scouts has placed an emphasis on the importance of staying active and living a healthy lifestyle. As they say – healthy girls are happy girls!

    In efforts to continue to promote a healthy, active lifestyle - GSUSA has partnered with Nestlé to encourage girls to participate in GirlSports.

    What is GirlSports? It is a program designed to promote group and individual sports as an opportunity to gain vital leadership skills. By playing sports girls are doing much more than just being active, they are learning how to lead – whether it’s through a team, group or personal efforts to succeed.

    How do we ensure girls are developing leadership skills from GirlSports?

    • We offer five Legacy Athlete badges that, upon completion, signify that girls have built skills ranging from good sportsmanship to effective coaching strategies.
    • Want to create your own path? That’s what leadership is all about! With our Make Your Own Badge option, you can get behind the wheel and customize your own GirlSports badge. Get creative!
    • Stay connected! Girls across the country are taking the lead in their lives through sports and outdoor activities; connect with them!

    Gett...

    Read Full Article ]
  • Troop 927's Brownies are Heroes!

    30 Jun 2014

    Congratulations are in order for Temple Terrace Girl Scout Troop 927!

    This troop of stellar Brownies was recently recognized by St. Joseph’s Hospitals Foundation as a nominee for its 2014 "Kids Are Heroes" program! The annual program recognizes children between the ages 5 and 18 from Hernando, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Polk counties who have performed heroic deeds, or displayed acts of selflessness and demonstrated good citizenship during the past year.

    Troop 927 was nominated because for the past three years, the troop has generously donated 10% of its cookie proceeds to St. Joseph's Childrens Hospital. The troop has also participated in the Hospital's annual Christmas in July event - a month-long, community-wide fundraiser for St. Joseph's Children's Hospital - for the past two years, with plans to participate again this year on July 25. 

    Congratulations, Troop 927!

    Troop 927 being honored at the "Kids Are Heroes" event on June 21 at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. Each girl received a "Kids Are Heroes" cape, a medal, and a certificate signed by Derrick Brooks (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), Steven Stamkos (Tampa Bay Lightning) and Kimberly Guy (St. Joseph's Childrens Hospital).

    Troop 927 enjoys many fun moments but is learning a lot about the importance of giving back to others, especially through its experience with St. Joseph's Childrens Hospital.

  • Cadettes Create a Silver Lining

    20 Jun 2014

    While many students in the area have been settling into their summer vacations, Girl Scout Cadettes Stephanie and Lauren from Troop 1001 of Tampa have been hard at work on their Silver Award renovating a kitchen at the Children’s Cancer Center. After their Girl Scout sister, Javanna, lost her battle with Leukemia in 2012, they knew they wanted to work in benefit of an organization that gave so much to her.

    After visiting the Center and consulting its board of directors, Stephanie and Lauren decided to remodel its kitchen. The girls made contact with Hardware Imagination Tech to supply needed materials and solicited help from Counter Top Shop to build and install new cabinets. They also held two yard sales to generate the funds needed to complete the project. The newly renovated kitchen was revealed in a special dedication ceremony on June 18. Photos and video documenting the evolution of the project can be found on the girls' Silver Award Facebook page.

    Check out this video of Katie Genrich, office manager and volunteer coordinator at the Children's Cancer Center, to see the impact Stephanie and Lauren made at the Center. Katie served as the girls' Silver Award project advisor.

    Thank you, Stephanie and Lauren, for helping to make our world a better place!

  • MediaGirlz Guest Blog Post: Social Media Lessons from the Tampa Bay Storm

    06 Jun 2014

    On May 24, seven members of our council’s MediaGirlz team had the exclusive chance to chat with Greg Wolf, in-game host/emcee for the Tampa Bay Storm, and Caity Kauffman, social media and digital marketing manager for the Tampa Bay Storm, about social media and the important role it plays in providing publicity for a major sports team. The MediaGirlz also had the opportunity to interview two Tampa Bay Storm players – De’Audra Dix and Matt Hardison.

    The MediaGirlz each assumed a role during this opportunity, from journalist to photographer/videographer. Following is an account of the experience as prepared by our guest bloggers, MediaGirlz Kadien H. and Sofia H.

    Q: What did you learn about social media from this experience?

    Kadien: Want to get more followers on Instagram or more likes? Use hashtags (e.g. #TBStorm), that way more people can see what you posted. Post content that appeals to your audience to increase follower quantity. Always be clear on what you are trying to communicate. To gain attention, post a nice quote or cute picture, and always be sure to have a catchy headline.

    Sofia: My fellow MediaGirlz and I learned that Storm players and Storm staff use Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media to attract new fans and connect with current ones. Greg Wolf told us that the Tampa Bay Storm uses social media to announce events, contact fans, and help promote the team in general. The p...

    Read Full Article ]
  • Quinn's Bucket List

    04 Jun 2014

    One year old Quinn Schiro was diagnosed with Pontocerebellar Hypoplasia (PCH) at the age of 5 months old. PCH is a very rare brain disease that affects the development of the brain. Unfortunately, there is no cure for the disease and children with this disease do not live past early childhood. Quinn's parents decided to put together a bucket list for her, to not only raise awareness for PCH, but to ensure everyday spent with Quinn will be filled with wonderful experiences in her short life. 

    One item on Quinn's Bucket List was to become a Girl Scout. Daisy Troop 50106 from Land O Lakes community threw a "Welcome to the Daisy Flower Garden" party Saturday, May 24, for Quinn where they inducted her into their troop and made her an honorary Girl Scout.

    The girls used some of their cookie proceeds to purchase gifts for Quinn and decorations for the party. They handmade "flower explosions" which are small balls filled with mulch and wildflowers that are to be planted in Quinn's honor. They also handmade the welcome sign and decorated all the flower pots that held chips.  The party was a huge success and the girls had a wonderful time getting to know Quinn. 

    What a wonderful act of kindness shown by these Daisy Girl Scouts and their families. Check out the photos of the party below. To learn more about Quinn's story and to stay updated on all of her experiences, visit Read Full Article ]

  • How do you Define Beauty?

    23 May 2014

    "Did you know that six out of ten girls stop doing what they love because they feel bad about the way they look?"

    It's a common misconception that beauty is defined solely by physical appearance; after all, beauty is more than skin deep. Beauty can be found in all aspects of your life, - whether it be your thoughts and ideas or a unique birthmark - everyone is beautiful!

    Girl Scouts has partnered with WAGGGS and Dove to launch the Free Being Me PSA contest and invites you, alone or with a group of up to five girls, to create a short video PSA urging people to celebrate the qualities that make them unique and beautiful. This is your chance to tell the world what beauty means to you!

    How do you get started?
    • Visit the contest page for more information.
    • Not sure how to create a PSA? Not a problem! Watch this video to help you get started!
    • Learn more about the Free Being Me initiative here.
    Why participate?

    The winner of the Free Being Me PSA contest will win an iPad Air (16GB). Teamwork is always encouraged, so group...

    Read Full Article ]
  • Pledge to Ban Bossy

    09 Apr 2014

    Girl Scouts of the USA is proud to partner with LeanIn.org to bring you Ban Bossy, a public service campaign to encourage leadership in girls.

    When it comes to girls and ambition, the research is clear: Girls are discouraged from leading. When a little boy asserts himself, he is applauded. Yet when a little girl does the same, she is often branded “bossy,” a stigma that stays with her for life. Research shows this is one of many ways society inadvertently discourages leadership in girls.

    The mission of LeanIn.org is to empower women to achieve their ambitions. The mission of Girl Scouts is the build girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. Women’s leadership begins with girls. By middle school, girls are less confident, less likely to take risks, and less interested in leadership roles than boys—trends than continue into adulthood. 

    Together with Sheryl Sandberg, Girl Scouts is committed to changing this. Girls can be bosses without being labeled "bossy!"

    Visit www.banbossy.com and take the pledge to ban bossy. On the site, you will find some great resources like leadership tips for girls, troop leaders, parents, teachers and managers, as well as activities and stories to encourage girls to flex their leadership muscles.

    Join in the conversation! Send us your stories and photos of girls' experiences with the word "bossy" an...

    Read Full Article ]
  • Pillows for the Military

    02 Jan 2014

    After a year of hard work, five Girl Scouts, Lauren, Hannah, Kay, Bryce and Elisabeth, recently completed their Silver Award with the help of their troop to send care packages overseas to soldiers in combat zones. Cadette Troop 239 have put in countless hours and planning for the past year to complete their service project. The girls handmade close to 900 pillows to be shipped to the troops over the past year to supply some comfort in the harsh environments these soldiers endure. The girls collected nearly 250 letters and pictures to accompany the pillows from friends and family in the community looking to express their gratitude and remind the soldiers that they are appreciated and remembered as they serve our country. 

    In response to the care packages that were sent, the girls received many heartfelt letters of thanks from the soldiers; two of which happened to be Girl Scouts themselves! Check out some of the pictures below of the girls working hard to complete their project.