Thursday, April 22, 2010

Volunteer Appreciation

Volunteers are the only human beings on the face of the earth who reflect the nation’s compassion, unselfish caring, patience and just plain love for one another.
                        Erma Bombeck

Let’s see…let me throw out some numbers here.

In our medium-sized Council we have approximately 5,000 adults are involved, on an ongoing basis, with our troops…

5,000 volunteers give about 4 hours of their time EACH week…
            That’s 20,000 hours each week…
                        Multiply that by about 36 weeks each year…
                                    That’s 720,000 hours each year.
Or to put it another way, it is the equivalent of 82 years EACH year!!!

Add to that program volunteers, site directors, training volunteers, first aid trainers…and we’re talkin’ some significant time!!!!

Our 24,000 girls are very fortunate to have each of you. YOU make this great program happen for them.

I speak for our staff and our Board in saluting the vital work that you do bring the best possible leadership development program to our girls in 10-counties.

THANK YOU! You are the reason we are a GREAT Girl Scout Council!!!!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

From Ambassador to Adult, Part 2: How I Transitioned Girl Scouting into the College Experience

A couple months ago I wrote a blog post on transitioning into the volunteer role as an adult from my role as an Ambassador Girl Scout.  To be honest, I think I made the transition seem a lot easier than it actually is.

Keeping up my involvement was a lot harder than I had anticipated.  My first semester college certainly presented me with quite a few challenges.  I had to adjust to a completely new and independent lifestyle.  I didn’t have my mom coming into my room every morning to make me go to class.  I had to shrink my personal living space by quite a bit, but I would say I’ve made impressive use of my 9 x 7 foot rectangle in my triple-person room.  Not only did I have to adjust to college but also I had to adjust to the Big Apple.  After living in suburban South Jersey for 18 years, the shift definitely caught me off guard.

Despite all those changes, I never forgot what Girl Scouts had done for me.  I have certainly applied the dedication and leadership skills I developed in Girl Scouts in the classroom setting, and the time management skills I learned from my Gold Award and my role as the Ambassador for the Board of Directors certainly helped me make good use of my study time.  And I every time I saw a Girl Scout troop selling cookies in the student center, I made sure to make a donation.

After the crazy adjustments I made fall semester, I was ready to ease back into my involvement.  I joined USWIB, Undergraduate Stern Women in Business, and began collaborating with the Community Service Chair.  Our club hosted a week-long celebration of women through Women’s Week, and what better way to serve the Girl Scouting community than to host a Her Story Try-It Workshop?

Thanks to my years of experience in Girl Scout programming, the activities I planned out made for a very successful event.  We invited Brownie Girl Scouts from all five boroughs to join us in celebrating women on Saturday, April 3rd, at Tisch Hall, the NYU Stern School of Business undergraduate building.  We had one troop from Brooklyn, two troops from Harlem, and one troop from Chinatown come to explore what it means to be empowered as a woman.  Our Brownies created a timeline of their future goals, participated in an action story about Juliette Low, and made a fun foam door hanger to honor a woman they admired, all while rocking out to the likes of Taylor Swift, Michael Jackson, and Justin Bieber.  They also brought toiletry donations that we delivered to a women’s shelter in the Lower East Side.

I definitely feel this workshop has given USWIB a great opportunity to expand its volunteer opportunities with the Girl Scouts of Greater New York.  I am hoping to continue this collaboration into the fall semester with a larger badge workshop for Juniors and possibly Cadettes/Seniors/Ambassadors.  Knowing we had members interested in volunteering for the Girl Scouts and helping girls learn about a field we are all passionate about made me realize the power of my experience as an Ambassador and now an Adult Girl Scout.

I'll keep you posted on my future badge workshop endeavors!  For now, it's time for me to start prepping for finals!

Yours in Girl Scouting,

Kat Corson