Thursday, March 15, 2012

Woodbury Heights Girl Scouts donates cookies to local food bank

Woodbury Heights Girl Scouts donates cookies to local food bank
WOODBURY — The Girl Scout Cookie Program became more than just a lesson on money management and business ethics for one Woodbury Heights troop this week when they donated more than 50 boxes to the Greater Woodbury Cooperative Ministries Food Bank.

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Woodbury Heights Girl Scout troop 61782 deliver 54 boxes of girl scout cookies and canned goods to the Greater Cooperative Ministries Food Bank in Woodbury. Staff Photo by Tim Hawk/Gloucester County Times 

Woodbury Heights Girl Scout Troop 61782 filed into the food bank to donate cookies, and some other non-perishables, to who the girls specifically understood were “people who don’t have enough money to buy food,” second grader Courtney O’Hara said.

As the troop wrapped up their annual cookie sale campaign this week, some of the mothers of the girls decided it’d be a good opportunity to learn about paying generosity forward to the community, according to Troop Leader Lisa Daniels.

“When we were kids, it was people telling us, ‘there are kids starving in Africa,” Daniels remembers. “Now, it’s ‘kids are starving next door.’”

In keeping with one of their general themes of philanthropy, the girls quietly helped unload the boxes and bags of cookies and food and were given a lesson on what they do and who they help by the food bank’s director, Kathy Stackhouse-Cunningham.

“Most of the families that come here normally wouldn’t be able to afford cookies, this will be a real treat for them,” Stackhouse-Cunningham said. “People are going to be so excited about this,” she told the children.
The food bank serves approximately 350 needy families a month.

“I don’t think we’ve ever had cookies donated to us before,” Stackhouse-Cunningham said with a smile. “This is just great.”

According to Daniels, the inspiration to donate to the food bank came from a teacher of the some of the kindergarten girls.

“[Woodbury Heights Elementary School kindergarten teacher Nancy] Barton encourages her students to give back to the community,” Daniels said. “She keeps a jar in her classroom where the children can drop spare change. Then she donates the money to the food bank. We are just expanding on what she started.”
The girl scouts were able to collect boxes to donate while they were selling them door-to-door, at cookie booths outside of local businesses and with the help of their parents. People were able to buy boxes for the sole purpose of donating them to the food bank, as well.

Contact Jessica Bautista at (856) 686-3729 and
© 2012 All rights reserved.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012



Turnersville, NJ —Fifty Washington Township Kindergartens and First Graders ages five to seven earned a Girl Scout “Strong and Courageous” petal while learning Latin dance party moves with local Zumba Expert Desiree Bowen.

“Our troop leaders teach our children so many valuable life lessons, including how to care for your body through nutrition and exercise,” says Stacy Aguilar, Co-Leader for her troop in Washington Township.  “The girls loved Zumba!  Desiree did a really nice job teaching them fun dance moves appropriate for their little bodies.”

To keep the healthy theme moving, the Girl Scouts are currently celebrating their 100th year anniversary by challenging each scout to walk 100 miles over the course of a few months.  Girls are given a pedometer to track their steps.

Zumba Instructor Desiree Bowen is a member of IDEA Health and Fitness Association. She teaches all levels of fitness through Zumba, Piloxing, and Toning in several locations throughout Washington Township.  For more information, or to view her schedule, visit

Submitted By: Stacy Aguilar

Tuesday, March 6, 2012


Washington Township Police Officer Helps Girl Scout Daisies 
Earn ‘Respect Authority’ Petal

Turnersville, NJ, March 3, 2012—Washington Township Police Officer Tobias Haley visited a local Daisy Girl Scout Troop at Birches Elementary School to help 11 first graders earn a petal for learning how to ‘Respect Authority.’

Using the Dr. Seuss Book Horton Hears a Who, Officer Haley taught lessons on kindness, bullying, and coming to the aid of others.  He finished up the lesson with a more serious talk about “Stranger Danger” and how to sense and react in potentially dangerous situations.

With news of an attempted child luring in Washington Township last month, Girl Scout Troop moms appreciated the lesson.  “Officer Haley’s message was entertaining, fun, and right on the mark,” says Troop Co-Leader Donna Sullivan of Whitman Square.  “Parents enjoyed him as much as our children,” she added.