Girl scouts is much more than selling cookies
Girl Scouts of the United States of America inspires girls of all ages to become leaders and strive to live up to their full potential.
Socorro Girl Scout Troop 1104 leader Gerry Klinglesmith said Girl Scouts provides a program for girls of all ages starting from kindergarten through 12th grade.
Troop 1104 is for Cadettes and Seniors, which includes grades sixth through 10th. There is a separate troop for Daisies, which includes girls from kindergarten through first grade. Since there are so many of the younger girls, Klinglesmith would like potential leaders to start a new troop for them. Meeting times vary, depending on what leaders and troops want, she said.
This past summer, Troop 1104 raised money to travel to Washington, D.C. for the Girl Scouts’ 100th anniversary and to attend the Rock the Mall event. It’s a national sing-a-long with over 250,000 Girl Scouts from around the world who participated, she said. “We have five troops in the Socorro area, one service unit and one service unit in reserve,” Klinglesmith said.
At the end of October, the girls will celebrate Girl Scout founder Juliet Law’s birthday. They have a party which is similar to a mini carnival, with arts and crafts projects and various themes.
Two years ago at the end of December, the girls decorated trees for Good Sam’s tree option event, where the girls donated time and service for a Girl Scout project called “Bags of Hope.” According to the Bags of Hope website, the Girl Scouts collected used luggage and duffle bags for foster children and children of domestic violence.
Albuquerque Girl Scout Ambassador Brianna Swinderman completed a gold project in order to receive a gold award, the “Bags of Hope” project was to help her receive the highest award in Girl Scouting, Klinglesmith said. The girls who participated to help Swinderman collected over 1,300 bags.
“We encourage girls to do service projects, and develop girl’s character, confidence and courage so they can become future leaders,” Klinglesmith said.
She said as a Girl Scout, girls will need to decide what they want to do for their futures. Klinglesmith has been a troop leader in Socorro for eight years, and a life-time leader of Girl Scouts for 40 years. She said the fun part about Girl Scouts is to work with peers, earn badges and work on Journeys.
According to the Girl Scouts of the United States of America website, Journeys is where the girls take on projects to earn a combination of three badges. As scouts go through the levels of Girl Scouts they will obtain knowledge and skills, says Klinglesmith.
Girl Scouts explore new things, and it’s much more than a badge, she said. Girl Scouts participate in events such as a camp in October that all troops within a council are encouraged to attend, she said. The Girl Scouts also participate in leader Expo days when adults and leaders attend workshops.
“We would like to see the number of girls who participate in Girl Scouts increase,” Klinglesmith said.
The Girl Scouts participate in other fundraisers,too, such as making Christmas wreaths for their service unit, she said, and some of the challenges of a Girl Scout leader are encouraging girls in the troop to become leaders to keep the Girl Scout tradition.
Girl Scouts starts soon, and each troop starts on a different day and various meetings will be held at Parkview, Midway and Zimmerly schools.
At Parkview, the meetings start at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday Sept. 5, and at Midway at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday Sept. 6.; The meeting time at Zimmerly has not been announced. For more information about Girl Scouts contact Gerry Klinglesmith at 838-1309 or by email SU133.Socorro@gmail.com.