There are experiences in life that you never forget. Some of my most memorable are of being a Girl Scout —both when I was a girl and now as a proud board member of Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri.
I love how Girl Scouts continues to evolve and provide a wide range of opportunities for girls to take advantage of, grow their skills in STEM, money management or the arts all while learning from each other and building their confidence. As a child growing up, my family didn’t have extra dollars for us to do different things, but they made sure I had the chance to be a Girl Scout. Girl Scouts provided the perfect foil to my curiosity and hunger to understand more about the world around me and cultures different from my own Hispanic experiences.
In Girl Scouts, I learned to step out of my comfort zone. It was here, in the all-girl, girl-led environment that I challenged myself and tried so many new things cheered on by my sister Girl Scouts and troop leaders. My troop leaders were very different from my own parents. They went out of their way to help me understand what it is like to be out in the world. They gave me the opportunity to go different places, like camping, making my first sit-upon and being in the great outdoors. Opportunities I wouldn’t have been able to have without Girl Scouts.
I stayed a Girl Scout throughout high school because I was learning and doing so much. Compared to my non-Girl Scout friends, I was the one who always took initiative. I finished high school, then college and secured a great opportunity after earning my undergraduate degree, and was hired on at AT&T. I climbed the ranks relying on the skills I gained in Girl Scouting—from being a patrol leader at camp; from confidently talking in front of people; from being an achiever and living a fearless life.
Our whole G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader) TM message—underscores what Girl Scouting is all about and supports our mission of building future leaders. To me, Girl Scouts is the best leadership development organization for girls in the world. It helped me realize that there is a bigger world outside of the community I grew up in and the importance of giving back.
Girl Scouts is for every girl, everywhere. It makes no difference who you are or where you come from. Because of Girl Scouts I am a go-getter. I am an innovator. I am a risk taker, and I am a leader. All girls have the right to be a G.I.R.L. and Girl Scouts provides the platform for girls to discover their strengths, embrace their intellect and succeed on whatever path they choose. It’s why I’ll always be a Girl Scout and encourage others to join, too!