by Dani Clarke
Each year, January is a month of new beginnings. Resolutions to make changes in your life are often put into place every year on January 1. Each new year also challenges us to make this year the best it can be. For the Girl Scouts, January marks the beginning of one of the biggest events it is known for: Girl Scout cookie sales. While Thin Mints and Trefoils are often synonymous with the Girl Scouts, Girl Scouts is definitely more than just cookies.
Selling Girl Scout cookies is the major fundraiser for the local Girl Scout troops. Not only does this fundraiser help reduce the costs of being a member of the Girl Scouts, it helps the troop offset craft and educational supplies, as well as provides daily troop supplies and decreases the costs of functions like Girl Scout camp. In addition to helping the troops’ bottom line, cookie money pays for service projects.
Selling Girl Scout cookies helps the girls learn responsibility and money managing skills from managing their orders. This process, as well as the many benefits of Scouting, helps mold the girls into future leaders of America through their up-for-anything adventures and altruistic service projects.
Laura Brown, leader of Troop 40520, knows all about the adventures these girl scouts can go on. “My 11th graders have used their money to go rafting and zip-lining, as well as take trips to the beach and a hot air balloon festival – not to mention lots of pizza and snacks!” Laura said. But the money earned from cookie sales goes beyond the troop. “My troop used money to donate a water bottle refilling station at Signal Mountain Middle High School as part of its Silver Award.” These older Girl Scouts have plans for the future. “While each girl was also able to use the troops’ earnings for part of the Gold Award projects (the highest award in Girl Scouts), as well, my girls are really hoping to use the remaining money to offset the costs of a group trip to Disney or New Orleans as their last hurrah before they head off into their futures next year!” Laura said.
Girls from local troops will begin taking advance orders for cookies this month, with cookies set to arrive in late February. Even if you don’t like cookies, there are always opportunities to purchase boxes of cookies to donate to others. For example, for the past couple of years, cookies have been sent to members of our military.
Don’t worry if a Girl Scout doesn’t make it to your doorstep: cookie booth sales will take place at several nearby locations once the cookies arrive, and will continue through March.