High Waters Cause Suspension of Activities at Camp

Update: Activities have resumed — please see the June 19th blog post: “Activities to Resume at Latonka Program Center

Safety is number one priority

With Lake Wappapello’s water level at 35 feet above normal on May 9, Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland (GSMH) is forced to suspend all activities hosted at the Latonka Program Center until the water recedes and clean-up and restoration at the property can be completed.  Latonka Program Center is located in Wayne County and home to summer, troop and family activities, as well as council sponsored activities, such as summer resident camp.

“It is unfortunate that the historic flood has created this tough decision,” states Jennifer M. Orban, CEO for GSMH, “but parents depend on us as an organization to provide a safe environment for their girls.”

Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland is offering summer camp at three additional locations, including Cherokee Ridge Program Center, also located in Wayne County.  Valarie Moseley, Chief Membership/Leadership Program Officer for GSMH understands the disappointment for the girls saying, “I know that many girls were looking forward to an outdoor camp experience this summer.  Therefore, we will be adding additional weeks of resident camp at the Cherokee Ridge facility for those who would like to participate in activities such as horseback riding, aqua sports, and the science behind the solar system.”  Go to www.girlscoutsmoheartland.org for more information on the additional sessions added at Cherokee Ridge.

If you would like to offer donations to help with the clean-up and restoration of Latonka Program Center, please contact Angie Sullivan at 877-312-4764 ext. 1343.

For additional information: http://www.girlscoutsmoheartland.org/pages/camp.php


Helping Japan in a Time of Need

We have all been shaken by the waves of terrible news from Japan over these past few days.  Many have asked what we can do to help.  Here are some suggestions:

•    USA Girl Scouts Overseas: As many of you know, we do maintain an office and staff in Japan to support the families of military personnel stationed there.  Reports are that our office has suffered minor damage – and that all the staff and their families are “shaken,” but fine.

•    Fund Raising Policy: It is fine for troops/groups/girls to raise money to aid victims of this horrible disaster.  Please remember that in the early stages of disasters like this, money is more helpful than “care packages.”

•    Helping Girl Scouts of Japan: We are very concerned about our Girl Scout sisters who are members of Girl Scouts of Japan and we would like to provide some movement-wide support to them.  Details are not available yet, but an account will be set up at Girl Scouts of the USA to collect donations to go to Girl Scouts of Japan so that we can send one large donation on behalf of all Girl Scout sisters in the USA.

Other organizations you can contribute to:

Convoy of Hope

American Red Cross

International Medical Corps



We will keep you informed as we receive information from GSUSA.


How Can You Help Japan?

The 8.9-magnitude earthquake that struck Japan on Friday claimed hundreds of lives, destroyed cities, and triggered tsunami waves in Japan, Hawaii and other parts of the Pacific. 88,000 people are now reported missing following the tsunamis. Below are some reputable organizations through which you can help.

In response to the quake, The Red Cross has launched efforts in Japan. Visit Redcross.org or text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 from your phone.

Save the Children is currently organizing efforts and donations to their Children’s Emergency Fund will support their outreach.

The Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Relief Fund was launched at GlobalGiving.org to garner funds for relief organizations helping victims and has already raised thousands, particularly from concerned Twitter users around the world.

For any who have loved ones abroad, Google has stepped up to help. Along with a tsunami alert posted on their front page, they’ve launched the Person Finder to help connect people that may have been displaced due to the disaster.

Our thoughts go out to everyone affected by this disaster.


Regional Chats

Registered members of Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland are invited to attend a Regional Chat in October. At these informal panels, the GSMH senior team will be present to provide council updates and to hear your ideas.

Southwest Region
Thursday, October 14 • 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Columbus Scout House
116 E Country Rd, Columbus, KS

Southeast Region
Monday, October 18 • 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Westside Family Life Center
1274 County Rd 5270, Willow Springs, MO

Central Region
Thursday, October 21 • 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Silver Meadows Program Center
300 S Pinnacles Rd, Hallsville, MO


Plans to Combine the Cape Girardeau and Dexter Girl Scout Operations on Hold

At a Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland board meeting held on Friday, September 17, the board of directors voted to send the recent decision to sell the Dexter and Cape Girardeau service centers back to the property committee for further discussion. After the decision to combine operations was made by the board in June, additional information surfaced regarding the potential payback of a grant and deed restrictions. This information will be looked at by the volunteer property committee, which includes representatives from all regions of the council. “These are tough decisions to make, and we want to make sure we examine all of the information thoroughly,” said Tina Stillwell, Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland Board Chair.

Currently, both the Dexter and Cape Girardeau Service Centers are two of five service centers that house administrative staff, including program and membership staff who serve the southeastern portion of the council jurisdiction. “Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland is proud to be able to provide the Girl Scout Leadership Experience to over 13,000 girls and 6,000 adults in our council,” stated Jennifer M. Orban, Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland CEO.  She continued to say, “No matter what the final decision, all Girl Scouts and volunteers in the area will receive the same quality support and programming with full-time membership and program staff dedicated to assigned areas.”

The discussion will take place simultaneously with the upcoming comprehensive review of all program center properties. This process is designed to generate a plan that ensures all program properties provide safe and well-maintained facilities that meet current and future girl needs.

For updates regarding the property assessments, please go to www.girlscoutsmoheartland.org/propertyinfo or email your questions to gscouts@girlscoutsmoheartland.org.

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Strategic Learning Surveys: we need your help

Providing an exciting Girl Scout program that gives both girls and volunteers opportunities to grow, learn and have fun is very important to us.  And we need your help to make sure our council keeps up to date with what is important to our girls and volunteers.

Over the next year our council will be going through a process called Strategic Learning.  We will be using the proven best practices of Strategic Learning to gather and review a lot of information from girls and volunteers across our council.  Girls and volunteers will have the opportunity to tell us what they like about Girl Scouts and what they would like to see happening in Girl Scouts.

This will happen in two ways:
1) a random sample of volunteers, girls and Girl Scout parents from across the council will receive a survey designed for their group in the mail; and
2) volunteers, Girl Scout parents and girls can click on the link below to participate in the same survey(s) online.

Please encourage any volunteers, girls or Girl Scout parents you know to complete the survey(s) online no later than September 1, 2010.  The more people that participate, the richer the pool of data we will have to use in our Strategic Learning process.


The Healthy Media for Youth Act (H.R. 4925)

advovate nowThe Healthy Media for Youth Act (H.R. 4925)


Issue Children are consuming more media than ever, but unfortunately, the images they see often reinforce gender stereotypes, emphasize unrealistic body images or show women in passive roles.  The need for more positive images of girls in the media is clear. As children’s media use continues to increase, all youth would benefit from seeing healthier and positive messages about girls and women.

Impact The Healthy Media for Youth Act would promote healthy media messages about girls and women for the benefit of all youth. This legislation will help girls and young women see themselves in a new and stronger light and create possible funding opportunities for Girl Scout programming and research.

Background In March 2010, Girl Scouts of the USA worked with Representatives Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) to develop and introduce H.R. 4925. This bill establishes grants for media literacy programs and youth empowerment groups like Girl Scouts, facilitates research on how depictions of women and girls in the media impact youths’ health, and creates a National Task Force on Women and Girls in the Media that will develop voluntary standards for promoting healthier media images of girls and women.

What’s Next We need your help to encourage Members of Congress to cosponsor this legislation. Please join the Girl Scouts Advocacy Network to be a Voice for Girls on Capitol Hill and to send a message asking your U.S. Representative to support H.R. 4925.


Join the Girl Scouts Advocacy Network



“Girl Scout Day” proclaimed by Missouri Governor Jay Nixon

girl_scout-1_120wGirl Scouts across the state of Missouri celebrated when Missouri Governor Jay Nixon signed Senate Bill No. 649 into law on June 29, 2010, proclaiming March 12 as “Girl Scout Day” in Missouri. The proclamation will be issued annually for that day, recommending Missouri residents to recognize Girl Scouts, the premier leadership development organization for girls.

Girl Scouts was founded by Juliette Gordon Low on March 12, 1912. Low assembled 18 girls from Savannah, Georgia, for a local Girl Scout meeting. She believed that all girls should be given the opportunity to develop physically, mentally, and spiritually. With the goal of bringing girls out of isolated home environments and into community service and the open air, the country’s first Girl Scouts hiked, played basketball, went on camping trips, learned how to tell time by the stars, and studied first aid.

Girl Scouting in the state of Missouri began in 1918, when the St. Louis City and County Council of Girl Scouts (now Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri) was established. In 1923, the Kansas City area council was formed; and in 1954, additional councils formed in the central and southern areas of the state, including those that are now Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland. Today, more than 88,000 girls, supported by 25,500 volunteers in the state of Missouri join a membership of more than 3.4 million Girl Scouts across the United States. On March 12, 2012, Girl Scouts will celebrate its 100th anniversary.

Girl Scouts builds girls of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place. Girls in grades K -12 join for fun and friendship, but they also benefit from clear developmental outcomes that will serve them for the rest of their lives. In partnership with committed adult volunteers, girls discover a stronger sense of self, connect through healthy relationships with others in an increasingly diverse world, and take action in their local and global communities – these are just a few of the many ways that Girl Scouts empowers girls to become leaders. All Girl Scout experiences are intentionally designed to tie to one or more of the 15 national leadership outcomes, or benefits.

For more information about Girl Scouts, please visit www.girlscoutsmoheartland.org, or call 877-312-4764.


Extended Cookie Sales – Special Troop Offer

cookie boxesFirst of all, we wanted to take a moment to tell you how much we appreciate all of your effort and support during the 2010 Cookie Program!

The 2010 cookie season has had many new and exciting opportunities, but with that we have had challenges (or learning experiences).

This year ABC started a new ordering process, so whatever we have in the four warehouses – we own.

Our challenges have become your opportunity to earn additional funds for your troop.  We have cleared out the warehouses and have more cookies than we need.

This is why we are able to offer troops a one-time increased proceeds on cookie sales (while supplies last).

You can earn $2 per box on cookies sold AND no additional paperwork! Here’s how:

All troops who come to a service center and purchase cookies between 3/15/2010 and 3/31/2010 will get the following perks:

Troop Profit: $2.00/ per box Can purchase mixed cases No Paperwork Due


  • All purchases will need to be in full cases, these can be mixed cases (total of 12 boxes).
  • Must pay at time of purchase ($24.00/ per case) with a troop check only or NO discount will be given.
  • In order to streamline this process (no paperwork), additional cookies picked up will not count towards girl recognitions, cookie credit, troop or SU bonuses.
  • All direct selling to the public must be completed by April 30, 2010.
  • Additional cookies purchased and troop proceeds earned must be documented on your annual Troop Financial Report due on July 1st.
  • All sales to the public will continue at $4.00/ per box – no exceptions.
  • It is the responsibility of the troop to collect on any insufficient funds checks received for cookies sold during this time period.

This is a great opportunity for those troops who are planning to go on a trip or want to help girls attend resident camp this summer!

Stop by one of the five service centers to pick up your cookies today!

Cookies will only be available in the service center cookie cupboards.  You can still call ahead for larger orders.

If you are unable to come to a service center, please contact your community/membership development specialist to make arrangements for a delivery.

Toll Free: 877-312-4764

Cape Girardeau Service Center, 1432 Kurre Lane, Cape Girardeau, MO  x1503

Dexter Service Center, 1420 Girl Scout Way, Dexter, MO  x1423

Jefferson City Service Center, 230 Metro Drive, Jefferson City, MO  x1337

Joplin Service Center, 1029 E 7th Street, Joplin, MO  x1215

Springfield Service Center, 210 S. Ingram Mill Road, Springfield, MO  x1132 or 1133

All service center cupboard hours are as follows: Monday – Friday 11:00 am – 4:30 pm and Saturday, March 20th from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm.

All service centers will be CLOSED on 3/17/2010 and 3/27/2010 due to a previously scheduled staff meeting and annual meeting.