\ All Things Girl Scouts: 2016-09-11

September 16, 2016

Parent Email - Start of the Year


Girl Scout 
verb

Being a Girl Scout is something you DO, and it is an EXPERIENCE that no girl should miss!




I've been remiss on my posting lately, and I apologize. Writing this blog and providing resources for other girl scout leaders is a sincere passion of mine. 

Unfortunately, my mother passed away from stage 4 lung cancer that had metastasized to her brain, femur and heart this past week. It has been a whirlwind of caring for her, funeral arrangements and settling her affairs. 

I did come across an email that I used at the beginning of the year and wanted to share it with you all. It's personalized for my troop but it's a pretty good template and the verbiage is really well put together. I hope some of you find it helpful. 

Girl Scouts 2016-2017 *Important*
Hello! It is that time of year again...school is starting.  AND....Girl Scouts is coming back to your regularly scheduled programming!!  I am very excited to be seeing your girls again regularly (or to begin seeing them, if they are new!) and cannot wait.  SO. I wanted to send out a quick email - even though I know we, as a group, are terrible at emails lol.

I wanted to apologize for my lateness in this email - It's been half written for weeks.  My mom (as most of you know) is very sick with stage 4 lung cancer, and last week, we discovered it had metastasized further, to her heart.  She was given 3-6 weeks to live.  I did end up flying out to Minneapolis again to tend to her, and spend time with her, and have plans to do so again in Sept.  This may interrupt girl scouts at some point, but I am confidant that our parent volunteers will be able to step up and get us through. 

We have a really exciting year coming up - our Daisy's and Brownie's have a lot on their docket!  We will discuss them more in depth at our first meeting - September 6th - but I wanted to give a quick overview.  Our Daisy's will be working out of the girls guide for Daisy's and our Brownies will be working out of the girls guide for Brownies.  We will do TWO really fun events this first half of the year.  1.  A day trip here in town to the Poplar Grove Plantation.  They have fantastic educational programs for us to choose from.  This will cost about $7 per girl, plus a patch if we decide to get a patch for it.  This event will be open to all scouts, parents, and family members.  2.  An overnight trip to the Asheboro Zoo.  Melissa (our second in command) and any other parent who would like to will help me design some fun events for this overnight.  We will plan to leave town around 7 or 8a on a Saturday, and return around dinner time on a Sunday.  We'd like this to happen in October or November.  This event will be open to ONLY registered scouts and registered volunteers, due to constrictions regarding insurance, and girl scout policy.  The cost for this will be around $35 per person, and that will cover food, admission to the zoo, hotel stay, and transportation.  If we would like the girls to receive a badge for this event, there would be an additional $0.75 - $1.50 added.  
The reason for two trips - one overnight, one day trip - is because we have a variety of girls who span different ages, and may be at different places in terms of how comfortable they are in leaving mom and dad.  I wantEVERY girl to be able to have a great experience so I did a lot of research to find a great day trip here in town.  I think we will be very pleased with Poplar Grove Plantation.

We are planning on meeting weekly this year, Tuesdays, from 6p to 7p.  Please reach out to me ASAP if you have some major conflict with this day or time.

The first meeting of the year will be September 6th, in our regular meeting place.  This will be our *parent* meeting, so each girl will need at least one parent present for this meeting.  If you cannot make it, please reach out to me and we can work on alternate arrangements.  Since we joined together mid year last year, none of us have been through this meeting together in the past, but I think you will all enjoy it.  I will have a calendar to hand out, a parent letter that will over our troop standards - and these are just generic guidelines - all of you and all of your girls are simply wonderful people!

We will talk about the various roles that need to be filled and availability for all of you to help.  I handled most of them last year, and I will absolutely handle any of them that need to be done, but any help would be greatly appreciated! 😊

Snacks should once again be pretty simple.  As far as I know, none of our new girls have allergies.  If someone has a new allergy, or anything that would interfere with what type of snack was provided, please reach out to me and I will make sure it is listed in the parent letter.  This year, you will also have the opportunity to opt out of your snack day(s).  If you choose to do this, you will need to make a $10 contribution to the troop, and I will make sure snack is provided.

As our girls age, we will continue to encourage them to lead their own activities, meetings, etc, as that is one of the cornerstones of girl scouts.  As such, we will continue to allow girls to pick a badge and lead a meeting.  We will have a little bit more constriction as to what they can pick due to use working out of the girls guide, but please encourage your girl to do this if she is interested.  What happens is, your girl chooses a topic/badge.  She works with you (or other parent, or adult in her life) to design activities for the troop to do that meet the requirements for the badge.  I can meet with you to help with the planning, and guide your girl as well.  It has been a lot of fun for the young women who elected to do this last year.


Money earning for the year starts soon.  Our bank about has about $325 in it right now, and I will have the current, exact total at the parent meeting.  Girl scouts, as a whole, has 2 fundraising campaigns the girls do throughout the year.  One is the fall product sale, which is nuts, candies, and magazines, and the other is our cookie sale.  As a troop, we will participate in both of these.  The reason for that is because if we participate in both campaigns, we can do outside fundraising as well, such as a bake sale, or car wash.  Fall product sales are not as well known as cookie sales, and I don't want ANYONE to get nervous or worried about the amount their daughter sells.  It is important that our entire troop makes an effort, but I don't care if they sell one $6 tin of nuts, or $500 worth of nuts. Each effort is equal, and all will be recognized for a job well done.  Cookies are easier to sell, but also can be a pain (LOL).  I get it - please dont feel pressured.  Something I'd like to touch on in the parent meeting, then again before cookie sales, is booking a large amount of booths.  Its much easier to sell at booths than it is to go door to door, and every booth has at least 2 girls at it so its sometimes more fun as well.

Cookie sales are where troops garner the largest amount of their funds - our previous cookie sales are responsible for funding everything we did last year, as well as the remaining balance in our account this year, so it really is a very important fundraiser for the girls.

Something I'd like all the parents to consider is a money earning project in the month of September or early October.  I was thinking something like a bake sale or car wash.  We could even do both.  These would go to bring down our costs for our two events this fall.  If there is anyone who would like to take on planning these with me, please let me know.  We will also have girls involved in the planning as well.  The *biggest* thing we need to consider is WHERE to have these things.  Church is often a great place for a bake sale - so if someone is a member at a church, that may be something to look into.  We can also cold call companies, such as ACE Hardware, or Trader Joe's and ask if we can have a bake sale near their entrance.  Please take a few minutes and think of any connections you may have or ideas you have, so we can talk about them at the parent meeting. 



In closing - LOL - that's all I have for now.  Please, again, let me know ASAP if you cannot attend the parent meeting Sept. 6th, and please reach out to me through email, text, facebook, or phone if you have any questions or concerns - I am almost always available.  I am looking so forward to spending time with your little ladies again this year - Yay girl scouts!
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