Troop 620, Cadettes
Years as a Troop Leader: 8
What inspired you to become a Troop Leader?
My daughter's school did not have a troop initially, and when she looked up with her big eyes and asked if I would start a troop and be a Troop Leader, I could not say no. Just like that, the journey began. Now I continue because these girls are amazing and really all feel like my own children and their families are extensions of mine. They have grown so much over the years, and I can’t wait to see how much more they continue to grow.
What kind of activities do you do with your troop? What is their favorite thing to do?
The troop has stayed together since kindergarten and has grown an interest in all sorts of activities. Some of the things they enjoy most are making food and exploring new badges and programs. We also enjoy spending time outdoors, going camping and hiking, and traveling out of state. My troop's philosophy is to always try new things at least once before deciding whether we like it, leading us to many fun adventures!
What kind of service projects have you done with your troop?
We have routinely done park cleanups and collected food to donate to our local food banks.
Tell us about a volunteer moment that stands out to you.
A moment I remember fondly occurred as we were walking into our local roller skating rink, Great Skate, and one of the girls stopped, had one of those light bulb moments, and said, “this is why we sell cookies.”
She was able to see her hard work pay off, which is a huge life lesson moment. It made me feel really proud to see her and the girls see their goals come to life, feel rewarded, and celebrate together. It has also been rewarding for me, watching the girls support each other when one is scared about trying something new and how they encourage and support each other. It makes me smile and reminds me why I do what I do.
What advice would you give other Troop Leaders?
Give yourself grace as you learn about the Girl Scout program and once you’ve embarked on your journey of becoming a Troop Leader. Something to remember is as long as your girls are having fun, you are doing a good job.
What do you wish someone had told you as a new Troop Leader?
You will get just as much out of it as the girls do. I also recommend attending or reviewing all of the trainings that the Council has to offer.
What would you like others to know about volunteer opportunities with Girl Scouts?
I want to share the many ways to volunteer, like being a Troop Leader and/or parent volunteer. Without the support and help of my troop parents, I would not have been able to do as much for our girls as we have.
Why is it important to participate in the GS Cookie Program?
During the cookie program, my girls have learned to interact with customers, count and manage money, manage inventory, and so much more. I have jokingly told the girls they should put these things on their resumes.
What are your troop's cookie-selling tips and tricks?
Some tips I would share is to bling your booth - this helps even the shyest girls feel more confident and is something to talk about and break the ice with potential customers. The customers always love unique decorations.
What is the most inspiring moment you have experienced as a Troop Leader?
There are many inspiring moments, and one that I recall took place at an amusement park. One of the girls had not yet ridden one of the rides and was scared to do so. The rest of the girls rallied around her, gave her encouragement, and helped her develop some ideas to deal with her fear. They showed support, care and offered the idea to ride in the cart with me next to her. She felt so supported and ended up riding it with me! Now she jumps to the front of the lines when we go anywhere with the rides!
What this moment showed me is how through Girl Scouting, my girls have built such great qualities, courage, confidence, and its shows up over and over in moments like this, all the time. They may not see it yet, but I see how much they continue to grow each day.