Girl Scouts Honor Civic and Corporate Leaders at Tribute to Achievement Dinner

Girl Scouts Honor Civic and Corporate Leaders at Tribute to Achievement Dinner

It’s been said it takes a village to raise a child and on Thursday, March 16, 2017, Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana honored three leaders of that village and the impact they’ve had on young women.

This year’s Tribute to Achievement honorees were: Luminary Award: Cheryl Burton, anchor at ABC7; ToGetHerThere Award: Carole Segal, co-founder of Crate and Barrel; Corporate Appreciation Award: Deloitte, accepted by Carl Allegretti, Chicago managing partner.

The council’s premier fundraising dinner, which was held at the Four Seasons Hotel Chicago, raised more than $650,000 in support of programming that prepares girls to be go-getters, innovators, risk-takers and leaders.

According to the latest State of the Girls report from the Girl Scout Research Institute, more girls are living in poverty today than they were 10 years ago and girls from low-socioeconomic backgrounds face considerable challenges that affect their health, happiness and achievement.

“For girls, growing up has never been more complicated. But there is a silver lining,” said Nancy Wright, CEO of GSGCNWI. “Research shows that girls thrive in places where their academic achievement is supported by activities such as Girl Scouts, which enhances their learning and skill development.”

During the event, select Girl Scouts shared testimonials about how the organization has improved their confidence, exposed them to a variety of leadership and educational opportunities and inspired them to give back to others.

“Through my involvement as a girl representative on the Girl Scout Board of Directors, as well as a myriad of other experiences I have had as a Girl Scout, I know that my voice matters,” said Aleena Ismail, a 17-year-old Girl Scout Ambassador, at the opening of the event. “My actions matter. I know that even one person can make a difference.”

To view event highlights and learn more about how you can get involved in Girl Scouting, visit girlscoutsgcnwi.org.

Why I’m Giving Back to Girl Scouts

Why I’m Giving Back to Girl Scouts

All of my friends were doing it. Admittedly, that isn’t a great reason for choosing something you would spend the next decade or so doing, but it is the reason I joined Girl Scouts as a kindergartner. That, and I really wanted to do all of the craft projects.

While the allure of plaster of paris and friendship bracelets was enough to get me involved, it was the different badges that kept me interested. Each badge opened up something completely new to me. Learning canoeing and archery at summer camps. Participating in World Thinking Day. Attending a ballet for the first time. Running a cookie booth at our town’s annual holiday parade. Restoration projects at the Dunes.

Being a Girl Scout allowed me to have so many different experiences, some that I may have never tried on my own. Each badge and project we pursued was our choice. Each of us had a voice and our opinions mattered. Our troop leaders guided us and facilitated the projects, all while making us feel like the ones leading.

On #GivingTuesday, my inbox was filled with appeals from worthy causes, but the Girl Scouts email stuck out to me. I hadn’t thought about my time as a Girl Scout for a while (beyond my annual cookie order). Reading the email, I was reminded of what I loved about Girl Scouts: friendship, opportunity, empowerment. Girl Scouts has helped so many girls become leaders in our world today, including myself. Though my donation was not large, I know it is still meaningful. Even a small donation can have a huge impact on a girl’s life.

And that is why I’m giving back to Girl Scouts. So other girls can explore the world. So they can discover something new about themselves. So they can feel free to be curious. So they can become the leaders they are meant to be. And because of how much Girl Scouts gave me.

Hayley Trezzo is a Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana alumnae and Gold Award recipient.

To join or become a volunteer, visit girlscoutsgcnwi.org.

Girl Scouts Build Solar-Powered Cookie Booth

Girl Scouts Build Solar-Powered Cookie Booth

No outlets? No problem.

After struggling to keep the lights on for their blinged-out cookie booth, Girl Scouts from Troop 60194 in Chicago had the brilliant idea to create a solar-powered, 3D-printed masterpiece to help them sell Girl Scout Cookies.

In order to make their dreams come true, the troop enlisted the help of Exelon to use STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) to “build a brighter tomorrow.”

But the fun doesn’t stop there.

The troop is planning to donate 500 boxes of Girl Scout Cookies to wounded veterans in Baltimore and D.C. through the Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana’s Gift of Caring program.

Learn more about their journey here and watch their booth-building adventure below.

Girl Scouts and Women’s Energy Summit Partner for Girl Power-Get Energized

Girl Scouts and Women’s Energy Summit Partner for Girl Power-Get Energized

Our girls had an electrifying time with the Women’s Energy Summit at the Illinois Institute of Technology recently.

 

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Girl Scouts from our after-school GirlSpace program and local troops participated in Girl Power-Get Energized!, which featured energy- and electricity-based activities with female professionals in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). Participants also learned about fun and interesting careers with an interactive panel.

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Women with a variety of backgrounds shared personal and professional advice about what it takes to become successful in STEM; how to achieve work-life balance; the importance of grit and how to follow your passion.

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Many thanks to the Women’s Energy Summit and the Illinois Institute of Technology for planning such a wonderful event and to all of the volunteers for donating their time.

To learn more about Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana’s upcoming programs and events, click here.

Celebrate the Girl Scouts’ Birthday By Giving Back

Celebrate the Girl Scouts’ Birthday By Giving Back

To celebrate 105 years of Girl Scouting, we’re giving back to the community.

Join us on March 12 at our Vernon Hills Gathering Place or March 14 at our Merrillville Gathering Place for this year’s Girl Scout Birthday Bash and service project to support newborn babies.

Bring a much-needed newborn item with you and receive an additional fun patch for your participation. Suggested donation items include clothing, non-perishable formula, bottles, and toys.

You can earn your Girl Scout Way badge, eat cake, and celebrate your favorite activity – Girl Scouts!

If you can’t attend the Birthday Bash, you’re more than welcome to work on the project on your own or with your troop.

For more information, click here and to learn about all of your programs and events visit gcnwiprograms.org.

Be Bold for Change on International Women’s Day

Be Bold for Change on International Women’s Day

Where would the world be without women?

It’s safe to say it would be a different place. Women have improved society and made their mark through their advancements, industriousness and inventiveness throughout time.

Would we be able to enjoy today’s technology without programming the first computers? Would 3,000 police officers have been saved from bullet wounds through the use of equipment reinforced with Kevlar? Would modern beauty and lifestyle brands be as successful if not for the the cutting-edge marketing of early entrepreneurs?

One thing is certain. Without women, there wouldn’t be Girl Scouts.

More than 100 years ago, a woman named Juliette Gordon Low saw fit that all girls should have a safe space to be themselves – a place where they could discover their strengths, passions and talents. And that place was (and still is!) Girl Scouts.

Some Girl Scout alumnae who’ve gone on to achieve great success are former

Secretaries of State Madeline Albright, Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Rodham Clinton, who became the first female presidential nominee of a major party. There’s also former US Attorney General Janet Reno, astronauts Sally Ride and Mae Jemison, as well as Olympic gold medalist Jackie Joyner-Kersee.

These women changed the world through their actions, which is why on Wednesday, March 8, 2017, also known as International Women’s Day, we invite you take the lead like a Girl Scout and #BeBoldForChange.

While there are certainly many accomplishments to celebrate, there is still work to be done. According to staggering statistics from The State of the Girls report, more girls are living in poverty and low-income households today than 10 years ago.

This is significant because we know that these girls with a low-socioeconomic status face considerable challenges that affect their health, happiness and achievement.

But together, we can improve conditions for girls across the globe. Because when girls succeed, we all succeed.

Let us know how you plan to #BeBoldForChange by sharing your stories on social media.

With purposeful action, we can create a better world — a more equal world for women and girls.

What I Learned at Girl Scouts Camp CEO

What I Learned at Girl Scouts Camp CEO

I applied to Camp CEO because I was approached via email by a Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana staff member, who told me about it being a leadership program. I had never done anything through Girl Scouts, besides what I did with my troop, so breaking away from that was something I was skeptical about.

I expected the camp to be loaded with a lot of Girl Scout stereotypes, such as making friendship bracelets and canoeing (both of which we did), but what I didn’t realize is that I would include making lifelong connections and friends.

We talked about real life experiences with the most intriguing and successful women. The women who led and spoke during our time together persevered through gender stereotypes, and broke through glass ceilings to get where they are today.

We went through exercises that would help us in diverse professional settings, along with conversational skills that could help us close a deal or confront issues in the workplace. This camp was lead and organized so that you could ask real-life questions to real-life adults who have gone through the same experiences that we will one day go through. This fact alone makes the whole camp unique, seeing as how mere high school students don’t often get to have heart-to-heart conversations with CEOs of companies.

Camp CEO is important so you can get to know yourself on a business level. It also urges you to think about what you want to do for the rest of your life, and sheds light on all the different opportunities you might not have thought about.

Amelia Harlocker is a 16-year-old Girl Scout Ambassador who attended Camp CEO. To learn more about Camp CEO and to apply, please visit girlscoutsgcnwi.org.