I joined Girl Scouts 55 years ago as a Brownie. Growing up as a Girl Scout made me feel much stronger and capable. I went to Day Camp that was right near my house. Then my younger sister joined and went to camp. By now Mom was an assistant troop leader. The following year the next younger sister also wanted to go to camp so Mom joined the camp staff and Dad became the do everything guy for the property. By then I was old enough for sleep over camp and started going to Camp Wind in the Pines in Buzzards Bay Mass. I became a CIT and then a camp counselor. I then became a “First Class”scout. As a Cadette, and Senior Scout I was fortunate enough to attend 2 Wider-Ops and work at 2 others. My freshman year of college was the first year of Campus Scouts and I registered for that. The day I started college my youngest sister started kindergarten and (you guessed it) I became an assistant leader. Eventually I became the troop leader. By the time those girls graduated my own daughter was turning 5 and, Yup, I was a troop leader again. By the time she was old enough for day camp we lived near another G.S. camp and I was a unit leader. I became a life member and not long after that troop graduated I moved to Rhode Island and introduced myself to our local SUM. The first couple of years here I just did occasional things to help out. Then I was told about a young women in the council who wanted to start a G.S. chorus. As a semi-retired music teacher it was a perfect fit and for 8 yrs. I was the assistant director of the GSSNE Chorus and taught many of the girls to play guitar.
I have traveled, made life long friends, and stronger bonds with my sisters through Girls Scouts. When I was 13 and my youngest sister was 15 months old I saved her life by calling the poison control center and following their directions. I had learned the poison control center phone number as part of working on my “Emergency Preparedness” challenge in Girl Scouts. I became a professional singer and music teacher. I could never have done these things without Girl Scouts. In fact I would have thought I couldn’t. The women who who helped make me who I am were adult volunteers in Girl Scouts and I owe them so much. So I’m still paying it forward. As of now my granddaughter is a 2nd year Daisy and my daughter is one of her leaders. So she is now the 4th generation of my family in Girl Scouts and I can’t wait to take her camping this summer.
I hope that the future holds more and more opportunities for girls and women and that through Girl Scouts I will be part of making sure they are ready for whatever they choose to do. I believe that we need much more leadership from women and that today’s Girl Scouts will be those women. When I look at the accomplishments of G.S. alums I am so impressed and ready to help the next generation of phenomenal women.