Girl Scouts celebrate 97 years

Published 10:36 pm Thursday, March 5, 2009

March is Women’s History Month and, quite appropriately, the celebration of the birth of Girl Scouting in the USA. On March 12, 1912, Juliette Gordon Low assembled 18 girls in Savannah, Ga., for the first Girl Scout meeting.

For the 97 years since, Girl Scouts has built millions of girls of courage, confidence, and character who are still making this world a better place.

Girl Scouts is proud that change is one of its greatest traditions. While the core values remain the cornerstone of the Girl Scout Movement, each year the program evolves to keep in step with the needs of today’s girls.

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Women have come a long way since Girl Scouting first began, but there is still a distance to go. Women continue to earn less than men and hold fewer management positions.

However, there is a growing interest among girls to explore leadership. The key is in offering them the right type of positive experiences with which to build leadership skills.

That’s where Girl Scouting comes in. The Girl Scout Research Institute just released a study, Change it Up, that provides insight into the leadership qualities girls value.

Girls are more likely to seek cooperation and consensus, rather than top-down management. The study also revealed that girls and boys still believe it is more difficult for a woman to become a leader.

Building a girl’s skills and self-confidence, which is a key component of Girl Scouts, can overcome those stereotypes and barriers, the research shows. You can learn more about the study by visiting

Locally, Girl Scouts are leading every day. Girl Scouts will get together to bake bread for the needy during the Spread the Bread program. Senior Girl Scout Troop 872 is using its leadership skills to keep a local lake and its inhabitants healthy through collaboration with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

In April, Girl Scouts all over northeastern North Carolina and southeastern Virginia will participate in the Girl Scout Goodwill to Others Community Drive by collecting goods and clothing for local Goodwill stores.

Through the Girl Scout Leadership Experience, young girls are given the skills, mentorship, and empowerment they need to become tomorrow’s leaders today.

Girl Scouting is for every girl, everywhere, and volunteers of all ages, races, genders, and backgrounds are always needed. If you’d like to join the Girl Scout Movement, contact the Girl Scout Council of Colonial Coast at 547-4405, ext. 239 or visit