Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA), the BEST leadership development organization for girls—is offering Girl Scouts even more opportunities to learn skills and prepare them to empower themselves with the experiences they need to succeed in life.
This week, GSUSA introduced 23 new badges in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) and the outdoors—our largest programming rollout in almost a decade! Girl Scouts will be able to design robots and racecars, go on environmentally conscious camping trips, create algorithms, collect data in the great outdoors, try their hand at engineering, and so much more. And the best part? These new badges are girl-tested and girl-approved!
The new Girl Scout programming builds girls’ skills and encourages their interest in STEM and environmental conservation from an early age—areas girls are not typically encouraged to explore outside Girl Scouting—increasing their confidence in an all-girl, girl-led environment where they feel comfortable to try new things, take appropriate risks, and learn from failure.
GSUSA created select badges with contributions from notable organizations in the STEM and outdoor industries, such as GoldieBlox, WGBH/Design Squad, the Society of Women Engineers, the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics, Code.org, and SciStarter.
These awesome badges have debuted on Girl Scouts’ first digital platform for volunteers, the Volunteer Toolkit, making it more accessible than ever to unleash the power of every G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™. The Volunteer Toolkit helps parents and volunteers easily plan meetings and activities; keep track of important information; and, ultimately, make it easier to support amazing experiences for girls!
In the toolkit, most programming for girls in grades K–5 is autopopulated so troop leaders can view activity plans and necessary materials, customize meetings, and track troop finances all in one place. Plus, the instructions included throughout make subjects that might otherwise intimidate some volunteers—like STEM—accessible and understandable, so they can confidently carry out troop activities. Which means helping girls take the lead in their adventures just got a whole lot easier!
Need even more reasons to join the Girl Scout Movement? The Girl Scout Research Institute recently released new findings that show how participation in Girl Scouts helps girls develop key leadership skills proven to help them achieve bright, successful futures. Compared to their non–Girl Scout peers, Girl Scouts are more likely to be leaders because they:
- Have confidence in themselves and their abilities (80 percent vs. 68 percent)
- Act ethically and responsibly, and show concern for others (75 percent vs. 59 percent)
- Seek challenges and learn from setbacks (62 percent vs. 42 percent)
- Develop and maintain healthy relationships (60 percent vs. 43 percent)
- Identify and solve problems in their communities (57 percent vs. 28 percent)
- Take an active role in decision making (80 percent vs. 51 percent)
The most powerful part is that no matter where girls live or what their age or background is, Girl Scouts can help them develop to their full potential and excel in all aspects of life.