Missouri Flooding

We express our deepest concern for the flood victims and their families in southeast Missouri. As many of you know, we have numerous sister Girl Scouts in the affected area. We’ve had several calls asking how to help. For disasters in their early stage, it is best to offer donations instead of “packages.” Support can be provided by giving to one of the following locations in the local area:

American Red Cross – SE Missouri Chapter in Cape Girardeau www.semoredcross.org or 888-335-9471

Salvation Army – 573-335-7000

Southeast Missouri Food Bankwww.semofoodbank.org or 573-651-0400

Disaster Relief Fund – PO Box 53, Morehouse, MO 63868

Once the immediate disaster is over, you can continue to offer support through safe community service projects such as helping with clean up, clothing drives, or personal care item collections.


Project PetLitter

Project PetLitter
May 1 – July 31, 2011

Project PetLitter is a program designed to help recycle old phonebooks and keep them out of landfills. Phone books are collected by Nestle Purina, who then recycles them by turning them into pet litter.

Girl Scout troops that participate will receive $25 from Nestle Purina for every ton of phonebooks they collect. Phonebooks will need to be deposited in designated bins, which will be available in Branson and Springfield. If enough troops in an area are interested, it might be possible to place a bin in your area.

To participate, complete a GSMH troop program registration form and a money earning project application and send it to a GSMH Service Center by May 30, 2011. You will then receive a detailed email about the project.

Questions? Please contact Stefanie McCall at the Springfield Service Center: 877-312-4764 x1137 or smccall@girlscoutsmoheartland.org.


Volunteer Perspectives, It’s Your Story-Tell It!

As you know, Girl Scouts of the USA and Dove®, the leading personal care brand, partner to deliver Girl Scout leadership and self-esteem programming to millions of girls nationwide and abroad with the latest Girl Scout leadership journey It’s Your Story-Tell It!. It’s Your Story-Tell It! uses a storytelling theme in a fun and relevant way for girls to better understand themselves and their potential.

Keeping with the storytelling theme, I reached out to a volunteer recently to get an on the ground perspective on a journey in progress. “I have enjoyed the journey with the girls. Most of what we did came directly from the journey books, as we didn’t think we could truly test the journey unless we followed it closely,” she states. “As we progressed, the girls were more and more outspoken and confident in expressing their ideas… A number of them said they would try it again. It was evident that the effects of the project are both positive and sustainable, potentially reaching many more students and their families.”

Specifically, the girls were participating in a remake project—taking stock of the media in their lives, of issues in the community, creating a piece of media that better reflects the realities of their world. To continue sharing this message (which is the final step to the Influence Award), the girls were creating a public service announcement.

“I asked the girls what they have gotten out of our journey. They told me that they had never thought about the power of the messages in the media. They said that they gained leadership skills by bringing their media remake into their schools and being guides and leaders for all the other students. It was evident that the girls felt empowered by the fact that so many students followed their lead and participated in their remake project. They reported that they learned how to work with adults, and how important communication is and how difficult at times.”

Do you have any Journey success stories to share?


Next Week is National Volunteer Week. The GSMH Blog will be spotlighting stories around Volunteer Week. Stay tuned…

(ht: GSUSA)


Gearing Up for National Volunteer Week 2011

Established in 1974, National Volunteer Week has grown exponentially in scope each year since, drawing the support and endorsement of all subsequent U.S. presidents, governors, mayors and other respected elected officials.

National Volunteer Week is about inspiring, recognizing and encouraging people to seek out imaginative ways to engage in their communities. It’s about demonstrating to the nation that by working together, in unison, we have the fortitude to meet our challenges and accomplish our goals. National Volunteer Week is about taking action, encouraging individuals and their respective communities to be at the center of social change—discovering and actively demonstrating their collective power to foster positive transformation.

During National Volunteer Week, Girl Scouts of the USA pays tribute to innovative volunteers for making a difference. National Volunteer Week is not only our moment in time to celebrate our volunteers, but to enable a nation to share ideas, practices, and stories, wherever they happen, and shaping a movement to re-imagine the notion of citizenship for the 21st century.

(ht: GSUSA)