The confluence of current events—uprisings against systemic racism and a global pandemic—has sent our country and the greater world reeling. Though the future seems uncertain, one thing is clear: Girl Scouts’ mission of creating courageous and confident leaders is more important than ever. There’s an urgent call for leaders who can take the helm and steer us through these choppy waters.
Girl Scouts have always stepped up in times of need and our current COVID-19 crisis is no different. From donating cookies to essential workers, to marching against injustice, girls have leapt to the aid of others and continue to make the world a better place for everyone. Now with Girl Scouts’ National Service Projects, your troop can get involved too! Here’s how:
Girl Scouts Give Back
The Girl Scouts Give Back National Service Project initiative offers girls and families different opportunities to serve others and demonstrate acts of kindness. These service projects are being done by girls across the Movement and really speak to the impact they have when they work together. Head over to Girl Scouts of the USA’s website to see the list of available projects.
How to Complete Your National Service Project
Girl Scouts has three different projects that your troop can work on:
- Citizen Science: Girls can play a part in solving some of the biggest problems facing our planet by helping scientists collect data for their studies and experiments (AKA citizen science, which we’re big fans of!) Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) has partnered with SciStarter, an online citizen science community to help your troop get going. Choose from two options (Great Sunflower Project or Globe at Night project).
- Mask-making: Wearing a face mask is a civic responsibility and a sign of caring for the community. Face masks help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus and keep us and others safe and healthy when we’re out in public. Girls can make and distribute masks to help their friends, neighbors, and front-line workers.
- Letter-writing: The letter-writing campaign encourages troops to send letters to those in nursing homes, senior residences, and assisted-living facilities. While these folks have dedicated staff who care for them, they’re often unable to entertain visits from loved ones. Caring letters from Girl Scouts is a way of offering good thoughts and a “long-distance” hug to those in the community.
Once girls have completed their service project, we encourage them to complete the Girl Scouts National Service Projects information form (You’ll find it when you click the “Add Your Service Project” button on GSUSA’s webpage). This information will be collected nationwide and used as a tool to measure girls’ collective efforts. If your Girl Scout troop already has a cause in mind or idea they’re passionate about (and isn’t listed above), they’re more than able to do that! They can still share their project by using the same “Add Your Service Project” tool.
Troops who participate in a National Service Project can also purchase the Girl Scouts Give Back patch, available online. And as always, remember to stay safe. Follow any relevant COVID-19 guidelines and protocols before embarking on your projects. Though some aspects look a little different than they did in March, the bedrock of Girl Scouting remains the same. We’re in this together, and together, we can work to advance the common good. Let’s do this, Girl Scouts!
Lily Yu –Lily is a Program Resource Specialist at River Valleys. She earned her BA in comparative literature and Japanese from Hamilton College and has a background in publishing and advertising. Though she wasn’t a Girl Scout growing up, Lily is making up for lost time as a volunteer and troop cookie manager for her daughter’s Brownie troop. In her free time, she enjoys going for long walks, reading, and spending time with her family (And rescue dog, Neil!).