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Volunteer View: April 2020

April is Volunteer Appreciation Month

We love our volunteers all year round, but especially during Volunteer Appreciation Month! Check out some amazing volunteers that we have spotlighted on the GSCO Blog this month!

Are you looking for a way to show your favorite Girl Scout volunteers how much they mean to you? Here are a few ways to show you care even if you can’t see them in person:

  1. Call or video chat with them!

  2. Send an e-card

  3. Personalize one of our pre-designed card templates, one for younger girlsand one for older girls. Add a straight-from-the-heart message then text or email it to your volunteer(s). They’ll love hearing how they’ve made a difference in your life!

Looking to get everyone in on the fun? Consider sending a digital group thank-you via Kudoboard! Each troop member and her family can share a message, photo, or video on your volunteer’s thank-you board. Kudoboard has been officially licensed for a limited time by Girl Scouts of the USA . Use promo codegirlscouts2020 to unlock unique Girl Scout backgrounds—like this one —and get the following discounts:

  1. Mini board (up to 10 signers, FREE)

  2. Premium board (up to 100 signers, $4.99)

  3. Milestone board (unlimited signers, can play as slide show, $6.99)

Volunteer service awards: Nomination deadline extended to April 30!

Some Girl Scout volunteers go above and beyond all expectations and have a positive impact on their troop, their service unit, and sometimes, the whole council.

Recognize an outstanding volunteer by nominating them for a Volunteer Recognition Award. Nominators are responsible for ensuring that enough endorsements are submitted to support their nomination of a volunteer for an award. Contact your volunteer support specialist to verify the number of nomination and endorsement submissions.

More information about the awards and the number of required endorsements for each award, is listed on the volunteer appreciation page on our website and in the Volunteer Recognition Award Guide. You can also learn more about how to write strong nominations and endorsements.

Girl Scouts at Home

Girl Scouts of Colorado’s Outreach Program team wants to help you earn badges at home! Be sure to check out the Brownie Pets badge series featuring videos and fun activities from the week of April 6. For the week of April 13, Juniors can earn their Animal Habitats badge. Stay tuned to the GSCO Blog and our Facebook page for the Junior Staying Fit badge, Brownie Painting badge, Senses + Detective badge, and more!

Be sure to check out our Girl Scout at Home page for more resource and ideas for Girl Scouts of all levels. Also, follow Tomahawk Ranch and Sky High Ranch on social media for fun camp crafts, recipes, and games that you and your family can do at home or share with your Girl Scout sisters.

Virtual Highest Awards Celebration

Please join us on May 16 for a virtual, statewide Highest Awards Celebration honoring all of the Bronze, Silver, and Gold Award Girl Scouts from the past year.

If your troop or girl earned a Highest Award between March 1, 2019 through February 29, 2020, you should have received an email about contributing photos to the celebration. Don’t forget to submit by April 26. Email highestawards@gscolorado.org with questions.

A link to join the live virtual celebration will be sent to all Highest Awards troop leaders to share with their families. Additionally, we will send out a recording of the celebration that can be watched at any time.

Stand and Be Counted patch

Girl Scouts of Colorado is thrilled to launch our “Stand and Be Counted” patch in honor of the 2020 Census! Did you know that every 10 years, the United States Census Bureau tries to count every person living in the United States? This is called a census, and the  first U.S. Census was conducted in 1790! Girl Scouts are invited to earn this patch to discover why we count everyone, what happens afterward, and how you can become involved.

Thank you to everyone who joined in our webinar with the U.S. Census Bureau – Denver Region. We will hold another webinar on April 21. Register and join us to learn more about the 2020 Census and its impact.

Please note: The GSCO Stand and Be Counted patches are not yet available in the GSCO Shop. We will make an announcement when patches are available. You can also email retail@gscolorado.org to be added to the patch interest list. We will email the list directly when patches are available for purchase. **

Virtual Statewide Bridging Celebration

Girls have worked hard – and had tons of fun – all year; so, let’s celebrate bridging to the next Girl Scout level! While we know Girl Scouting might look a little different these days, we want to honor girls’ achievements through the year and celebrate their “crossing the bridge” to the next Girl Scout level. Join Girl Scouts of Colorado online for a virtual Statewide Bridging!

GSCO staff will guide Girl Scouts of all levels through a bridging ceremony from the comfort of your own home. Prepare ahead of time to bridge at home by making your own bridge out of pillows, stuffed animals, or anything else you can safely walk across! To join, visit our Facebook page at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 6, 2020.

You can also celebrate bridging this year by contributing to our Statewide Bridging video! Fill out this online form by April 29 to share your at-home bridging photo and reflections to be included in the Statewide Bridging video that will launch during National Bridging week (May 2-9).

Older Girl Advisory Board

Girl Scout Seniors and Ambassadors, have you been looking for a way to grow your leadership skills while helping local Girl Scouts? Join the Older Girl Advisory Board! Mark your calendars. The application window will be open July 20-August 7.

Older Girl Journey Weekends

In these fun-filled weekend events girls complete activities toward earning a Journey. After the event, they only need to complete their Take Action project to complete the Journey.

gsLearn: Online Training

We know times are different, but we are still here to support you! Log into gsLearn to stay engaged in your volunteer role and responsibilities! Take courses at your leisure and check the library for new content that interests you.

For new leaders

We have made the Daisy, Brownie, and Junior Troop Leader in Action courses available on gsLearn during this time. The discussion boards are open to talk with peers and get feedback from our training manager.

Log into gsLearn through the MY GS tab on the GSCO website. If you are having issues please reach out to your volunteer support specialist or to Kendy Doolen, instructional design manager, for support.

Leading Through Crisis

Leading Through Crisis learning path is made up of courses that, we at GSCO, believe will be helpful during this time. All courses in this learning path are optional and can be taken in any order. We suggest starting with the Change Starts Here course, it offers an overview of the entire learning path.

Other courses in this learning path:

  1. Mental Health in Times of Crisis

  2. Running Virtual Troop Meetings

  3. The Successful Leader Learning Series

  4. Field & Day Trips

  5. Overnights.

We will add more courses in the future including Troop Leader in Action for Daisy Brownie and Junior (previously Level 101s for new leaders), and Engaging Families.

Outdoor Programs

Outdoor Adventure Club

OAC events for April and May have been canceled. Visit the OAC page for more details and information about how to register for future events!

Kick off summer with an epic tent camping and kayaking adventure! We will camp in Leadville right next to the beautiful Turquoise Lake where you will earn the Primitive Camper badge as you work on your skills in campsite set-up, outdoor cooking, Leave No Trace skills and more. During the day, we will adventure in the area with hiking and kayaking on beautiful Turquoise lake, at night we will cozy up with s’mores around the campfire.

Outdoor gear and equipment rental

Kick off the summer camping season by renting outdoor gear from the GSCO Denver office, including: stoves, tents and other outdoor equipment. More information can be online. Rentals will resume when GSCO returns to regular business.

Rock Climbing Adventure Badge Series:

Join us for a day of outdoor rock climbing and outdoor skill building to complete some of the requirements for the new Rock Climbing Adventure badge. Girls will learn about climbing equipment, techniques, knots, and other skills before exploring up the rock walls. After climbing, girls will learn Leave No Trace and other outdoor skills to be prepared for future adventures. Fee is $20/ girl. Visit the event calendar to learn more!

  1. Thursday, June 18 – Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs

  2. Tuesday, June 21 – Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs

  3. Wednesday, June 24 – North Table Mountain Park, Golden

  4. Thursday, July 16 – Roof Rock, Red Cliff

  5. Saturday, July 25 – Grand Junction Area, exact location TBA

  6. Sunday, July 26 – Grand Junction Area, exact location TBA

  7. Sunday, August 2 – Magic Sky Ranch, Red Feather Lakes

  8. August / September TBD Date  – North Table Mountain Park, Golden

Community Partnerships/Upcoming Events

Following the advice of the CDC, Girl Scouts of Colorado has canceled all in-person events and activities through May 17 and all staff are working remotely. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we all work together to ensure the health and safety of our communities.

GSCO is hoping to reschedule the Annual Statewide Bridging Ceremony as well as the Daisy Flower Garden Journey at the Denver Botanic Gardens for late summer 2020. Check our social media and blog for an announcement when new dates are confirmed.

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