gs stories

How has Girl Scouting had an impact on the community and your life? We asked some girls, troop leaders and board members to answer this question for us.  The responses were as varied and beautiful as the individuals who wrote them.



“All the girls of Troop 1180 are working towards a Leadership Journey Award by learning the different women roles in life. With the help of a hospitalist, two firefighters, a priest, an orthodontist, and a lawyer, the girls received lots of encouragement to conquer all the challenges that come their way. Nothing can stop them from doing what they love. The entire panel followed the words of Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of Girl Scouts: ‘The work of today is the history of tomorrow, and we are its makers.'”


Jessica A. Roberts, Junior Troop 1180, Roanoke Valley GS Community
Working towards their aMuse Journey Leadership Awards
Click here for the full story: Girl Scouts Get Advice to Conquer Challenges




“I did not have the opportunity to be a Girl Scout when I was young so when my daughter joined a group, I was happy to volunteer and be an adult Girl Scout. This is by far the most rewarding volunteer position I have ever held. This is my fourth year as a leader and I have watched the girls grow in Scouting. Our troop is very active. The girls amaze me at how enthusiastic they are about earning badges. Over the last few years, these girls have learned many skills that will help them in life. They have served our community and are particularly interested in helping animals and the elderly. Most all of our girls have participated in trips and camping, including a few attending Girl Scout camps. They learn about others’ culture through the Thinking Day programs and travel. We have been blessed to travel to Camp Sacajawea and Natural Bridge; Sevierville, TN, sleeping with the sharks; our Founder’s birthplace in Savannah, GA, and Tybee Beach combing the beachfront, sand seining, and exploring natural habitats of marsh life; and Washington, DC, exploring our Capital and learning through the many museums. Girl Scouting enriches not only these girls lives but my own. I hope to be volunteering long after my daughter is grown, for I Discover, Connect, and Take Action myself through this wonderful program.”


Wendy Gunter
Her daughter Makayla, 8, sent this:  Makayla’s Reasons



“When I first heard this question, I got a flashback of the past seven years of my life and I realized that almost everything that I had enjoyed and accomplished had been through Girl Scouts. I still remember my first Girl Scout meeting; I was a shy 10-year-old girl with few friends and no hobbies. My mom thought signing me up would be a good experience (and she hasn’t been wrong yet). I walked into the church rec area and I saw girls I had gone to school and church with but had never talked to; they welcomed me in like we were already sisters and I have been thankful for that one moment ever since.


“I’d have to say that just the friendships alone that are made in Girl Scouts is enough to write an entire paper about, because the bonds you make with your girls is so valuable and it’s more of a group of sisters instead of a troop. You only become closer while selling cookies on cold January afternoons — or on a trip to Tennessee and the power goes out in your cabin and you spend all night playing Apples to Apples with flashlights. Also if it were not for Girl Scouts, I would not have met my best friend Elizabeth, who is so influential in my life that I don’t know what I would do without her.


“Girl Scouts has also taught me that if you can believe it, you can achieve it. With Girl Scouts I have earned my Silver Award for self-confidence promotion, I have almost completed my Gold Award for a No Text and Drive Campaign for my county, and I have hosted a fashion show for young girls promoting self-expression. I also believe that even the smallest act of kindness can be influential in someone’s life and that is why I make an effort to volunteer as much as I can. Girl Scouts has also affected my life at school and work. I have gained the confidence to be in my school audition choir and the spring musical, and I have decided to pursue a career in the U.S. military. So I guess the question is not how has Girl Scouts impacted your life, but how hasn’t Girl Scouts impacted your life?”


Shawna Murdock, 16



“What has Girl Scouts done for me?  It has shown me my daughters can make wise decisions for themselves. That they can go out and buy a car with their Dad along and ask all the right questions. Make a wise choice in colleges and make the choice to find a doctor that can really help them. As for me, I get to watch girls grow and develop into wonderful ladies. I see them taking more interest in roles they never thought they could do. We just did a Journey day for Brownies and we had Troop 592 run it. They said later, we didn’t think we could stand up in front of girls and talk about water and the program but we did and we liked it.”


Beth Raynes




“I was asked how my involvement in Girl Scouting has impacted my community. We so often focus on the most visible, “important” things — but it is the small moments that mean the most to me:


  • When a wide-eyed camper asks me, “Can I really light a match by myself?”
  • When a terrified girl goes on a zip line across the chasm, just because I did (while cursing under my breath the whole time).
  • A second grader telling me, “I want to be a Girl Scout leader like you when I grow up” when her parents are divorcing.
  • When campers are so excited about learning how to use tools, that they give up their free time to finish making sawbucks for the camp.
  • Watching the shiest girl in my troop go talk to the Irish Girl Guides — all by herself.
  • Seeing a girl leave Gold Award training excited about a project idea.
  • Having a camper come up and hug me months later, saying, “I couldn’t have gotten through the night without you.”


“Those moments, and hundreds like them, are my legacy.”


Linda Farrell



“I started attending Girl Scout Brownie meetings when I was 5 years old as a tagalong to my sister’s troop meetings — my mother Patti Gardner was the leader—and since then there has hardly been a week that I have not been involved in some way. I remember as a girl attending an association meeting — now open council dialogue meetings — and thinking how much I wanted to be a leader, delegate, board member and maybe even the council president. Those women were my idols.


“I am a member of a Girl Scouts family. We have all been lifetime members including the men. It was usual and expected that we would all be there helping prepare for day camp, council or service units — now communities — events, or the product sale deliveries. Experiential learning about being true to your character, the efficiencies of distribution, and the politics of good communication continue to serve me well in my work as a communicator and designer. I keep a copy of the Girl Scout promise and law on my desk as a reminder and reaffirmation of my lifelong commitment — wouldn’t it be wonderful if everyone aspired to these goals?


“Girl Scouts was responsible for my learning how to camp and survive out-of-doors but just as important, I learned how to survive the trials and challenges of life. As an adult volunteer I continue to learn and grow. I have been a troop leader, camp counselor, trainer, committee member, delegate, board member, and board officer and I wonder what are the next steps for me in my Girl Scout adventure.”


Holli Gardner Drewry
Assistant Director of Communications and Innovative Technologies
Division of Student Affairs



Troop 875 says:
“I like Girl Scouts because we get to see other places, do gardening, make new friends, and help other people.”  — Matilda, 6


“I like learning about things we don’t do in school, like how elections work, and keeping track of money when we sell cookies, and visiting the SPCA.”  — Meira, 6


“I love creating space for these girls to be reflective, and to develop skills that aren’t necessarily taught in school. In between gardening with Farmer Todd or doing a scavenger hunt on the downtown mall, we’re developing interpersonal skills, learning how to get along with people who are different from us, overcoming insecurities, and meeting fascinating people in our own neighborhood.”  — Lisa Colton, Troop Leader