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An Update on our Council's Fiscal Health

Dear Girl Scout Volunteers,

As we continue to monitor and adjust our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, always prioritizing the health and safety of our girls, their families and our broader community, I want to reach out and express the staff and my deepest gratitude for your continued commitment to Girl Scouting and the girls we serve. While you’ve been juggling the changes that COVID-19 has caused in your own life and family, your level of engagement in supporting one another, the girls, the council and the community has been truly remarkable.

We’ve seen thousands of you learn new technology skills to conduct ongoing virtual troop and service unit meetings. So many of you and your girls have animated the Girl Scout Promise and Law through numerous service and take action projects, including mask making, collecting food for our food banks, and gathering thousands of pounds of cat and dog food as well as other supplies to help Hopi and Navajo families who have been severely impacted by the coronavirus.

This kind of engagement and commitment to the Girl Scout Movement through this pandemic and economic instability, is why this Movement has survived many challenges over the last hundred plus years. We’ve heard that some of you are concerned about the long-term financial health of our council, given that the pandemic, economic uncertainty, and social unrest could escalate and/or linger for many months. Like most organizations and businesses, these are indeed very difficult times for our council and the national Movement. Our revenue streams have been significantly impacted and we have yet to see how this pandemic will impact our largest revenue stream – our Girl Scout cookie program. Thankfully, our council’s board and staff have managed our financial resources with fiscally conservative diligence over the past two decades. The council has the financial reserves, set aside for times just like these, to help sustain our council over the next couple of years, as our annual report shows. Nonetheless, we will need to be prudent and adapt our business practices in order to weather this storm. We’ll also need to continue to bring in as much revenue as feasible to sustain our organization and maintain our facilities for a future when we can all enjoy our camps and in-person events and program activities again.

We’re approaching the summer and upcoming fall season with a mixture of caution and hope. We will continue to prioritize the health and well-being of all our members and the numerous communities throughout our jurisdiction. We look forward to a time when we can gather again, in-person, to continue to learn, celebrate and enjoy what Girl Scouting offers us as individuals, and as a Movement that has helped build the social fabric, strong values and beliefs that promote civic engagement and sustain our democracy. We stand on the shoulder of the girls, women and men who lived through wars, natural disasters, and other pandemics. I have faith that our girls and volunteers like you will lead us through the current challenges with amazing innovation and passion.

Tamara J. Woodbury