Thursday, December 22, 2016

Happy Holidays!

It is so hard to believe that the holidays are here and we will soon be saying goodbye to 2016 and welcoming 2017 with excitement and anticipation! As I reflect on this incredible year, I would first like to thank our more than 15,000 dedicated adult members and volunteers who have worked tirelessly and generously to help make Girl Scouts of Connecticut achieve its mission every day in every zip code across the state. Because of you, we can continue to build girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make our communities and world a better place to live!

Throughout 2016, we celebrated 100 Years of Changing the World—the Gold Award Centennial. For 100 years, approximately one million Girl Scouts have earned the highest award in Girl Scouting—the Gold Award. In order to earn the Gold Award, Girl Scout Seniors and Ambassadors spend over 80 hours working on a Take Action project that makes a sustainable, lasting impact in their community.

 This year, we had a record-breaking number of 86 Girl Scouts throughout Connecticut who earned the Gold Award!  It has been an amazing year celebrating all of the hard work our girls do to make our world a better place. And, we can’t forget all of the work our Gold Award Mentors and volunteers put in to help them make it happen!

Coming up in 2017, we will be celebrating another centennial—100 years of Girl Scouts selling cookies! For the last 100 years, the Girl Scout Cookie Program has been built by girls! Did you know that the Girl Scout Cookie Program is the largest, girl-led entrepreneurial program in the world? Fifty-three percent of female business owners are Girl Scout alumnae, and may of them got their start selling America’s beloved cookies. Stay tuned for Order Taking starting January 7! We are so excited to celebrate such an incredible milestone with tons of fun activities—and a brand new Girl Scout Cookie–this year!

Have a warm and safe holiday season—see you next year!

Yours in Girl Scouting,

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

United for Good!

This time of year we like to think about our neighbors—especially those less fortunate—and how we can make a difference in our communities to make the world a little brighter. I like to take time to think about all of the amazing things that the United Way does to help those in my community and all the Girl Scout communities throughout the state. 

The United Way in each community is a network of businesses, families, and concerned individuals who are united and committed to improving the lives of their neighbors in need. They tackle homelessness, job training, and food insecurity. They help local children succeed in education, like helping them learn to read and providing them and their families with other critical resources. They truly improve the lives of others. One United Way resource, 2-1-1, is a free and confidential  web-based service that helps people across North America obtain the local community resources they may need for survival. Their ongoing work is truly amazing and I am in awe of their dedication and commitment to a better world.

What’s even more incredible is that the United Way also supports other non-profit organizations who are working towards making the world a better place for all, like Girl Scouts of Connecticut. For many decades, the United Way has been a tremendous supporter of Girl Scouts, and I couldn’t be more grateful to have them as a partner to support our efforts to help girls to thrive and succeed.

So during the season of giving, I ask that you remember all the organizations, like the United Way, that take action in our communities.  If you have the opportunity to support the United Way through your employer or in your community, know that they are doing incredible things to strengthen all our lives. Together, united, we can change the world!

Yours in Girl Scouting, 

Monday, December 5, 2016

Thank you for joining us at our 20th Annual Breakfast Badge event!

On Friday, December 2, at our 20th Annual Breakfast Badge event, we honored three incredible women who truly shine as role models for our girls in taking action to make our world a better place: Elizabeth (Beth) Alquist of Day Pitney, Christine Andrews of Andrews Benefits, and Yvette Meléndez, formerly of Hartford Hospital.  As each woman told her story, there emerged a trend of how important the early influences were in their lives in guiding them towards career success and the valuable lessons they learned from adult mentors along the way. Also sharing her very personal Girl Guide journey was Kerri-Lee Mayland of NBC Connecticut who served as our Mistress of Ceremonies.

GSOFCT CEO Mary Barneby, Yvette Meléndez, Beth Alquist,
Christine Andrews, and GSOFCT Board President Trish Bowen. 
At our new location, the Hartford Golf Club in West Hartford, over 225 guests joined us as we formed new relationships over a delicious breakfast and marveled at the accomplishments of three Girl Scouts from Hartford County—Ava, Kennedy, and Lucia who have earned the highest awards in Girl Scouting. We all left motivated and to continue to support girls in any way we can, because when girls succeed, so does the world!
Thank you all who joined us Friday morning at our 20th annual event. Congratulations to our three honorees, and may we continue to work together and strive to inspire girls to aim high with skill and confidence.

Yours in Girl Scouting,