Volunteer with Girl Scouts

Our mission at Girl Scouts is simple – build girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. It’s the driving force behind everything that we do. As passionate as we are, we cannot accomplish our mission alone.

We need volunteers to partner with us in creating a better future for girls and empowering the next generation of female leaders. Together, we can help our girls become G.I.R.L.s, or go-getters, innovators, risk-takers, and leaders.

This partnership is more than just asking women to lead a troop. In fact, we need both men and women to help us in a variety of roles. It can look like co-leading a troop, but it can also be a troop helper (think driving and chaperoning), coordinating cookie sales, mentoring adult volunteers, working at our camps, speaking at an event, etc.

Your commitment can be an hour, a month, a year, and anything between or beyond that. Girls just need people like you willing to sacrifice their time to show them they can do more than they thought possible.

Plus, as a volunteer, you can change her world and your own. Ninety-two percent of volunteers learn new skills they can apply to their own life. Sixty-five percent note how it helped them advance professionally. Eighty-eight percent like how it keeps them active. A huge 94 percent say they’ve made new friends. And those are just statistics! Here are the reasons why our volunteers do what they do:

“I want to help my community and teach young girls in my community to be strong, independent women who are willing to put others before their own wants.”

“I am an advocate for the many benefits of Scouting and want girls everywhere to be able to succeed in all of their endeavors.”

“I truly enjoy spending time with our young ladies and teaching them, supporting them, being a mentor to them, and enjoying their candidness and eagerness to learn.”

“I LOVE watching their excitement, sense of WOW and wonder and and their pride at belonging to this special sisterhood.” 

Those are just four testimonials of the many we could share.

Girl Scouts are so much more than cookies, badges, campfires, and friendship bracelets. Girl Scouts are go-getters, innovators, risk-takers, and leaders. These are the traits that define girls of courage, confidence, and character. Being a G.I.R.L. is in the DNA of being a Girl Scout.

Simply put, our girls need you, just as you are, to help how you can. No matter your age, gender, or background, it can be part of your DNA, too. Join us in empowering female leaders today.

Cookies with the Mayor 2018

Girl Scout Cookie Season in Western New York isn’t complete without our visits to see mayors throughout our council counties. This year, we had the privilege of visiting seven area mayors, having our troops ask them questions, and enjoying our delicious cookies with them!

In fact, the mayors are just as enthusiastic as we are each season.

“Each year, I look forward to the Girl Scouts of Western New York visiting Buffalo City Hall with their Girl Scout Cookies,” said Mayor Byron Brown of Buffalo. “I’m a strong supporter of this program because it is dedicated to supporting our shared goal of helping young people build confidence, foster community support, while teaching our youth the importance of entrepreneurship and the skills needed to be successful.”

Through our 5-Question Challenge, the girls can ask the mayors about a variety of things. In Lockport, the girls asked about what specific advice she’d give them about finding their future career paths.

“Read as much as you can. It doesn’t matter what aspect of work you get into,” said Mayor Anne McCaffrey of Lockport. “It’s important to understand the world around you. And establish a good work ethic. The more you put into a certain task, you’ll get the payback from that.”

Eleventh-grade Ambassador Girl Scout Erin Fisher found meeting the mayor so inspiring she’s now considering a future career in politics.

From March 7 to 15, 2018, we visited the cities of Lockport, Niagara Falls, Buffalo, Dunkirk, Batavia, Rochester, and Jamestown.

We planned to take Troop 60095 to meet with Congresswoman Louise Slaughter in Rochester, but she was called back to Washington. We’re so incredibly sad to hear of her passing, and wish to express condolences to her family. She was a force of nature and she will be greatly missed.

Our council CEO Judy Cranston expressed her gratitude to Mayor Brown for his support, and her words ring true for all who welcomed us over the past few weeks.

“The Girl Scout Cookie Program is the largest girl-run business in the world. We thank Mayor Brown for his support, as we work to build the next generation of leaders who embody courage, confidence, and charter, who make the world a better place.”

Click the pictures below to see more images from each event!

1
Lockport Mayor Anne McCaffrey (left) meets with Troops 70923 and 70245, as well as Judy Cranston (right) March 15
2
Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster (left) meets with Troops 70074, 70023, 70127, 70016, 70400, and GSWNY Chief Operation Office Alison Wilcox (center back) March 15
3
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown (center) meets with Troop 30022 and Judy Cranston March 12
4
Dunkirk Mayor Willie Rosas (center) meets with Troops 20010 and 20033 March 7
5
Batavia Interim City Manager Matt Worth (center) meets with Troop 42003 and Judy Cranston (left) March 8
6
Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren (second from right) meets with Troop 60420 and Judy Cranston (far right) March 7
7
Jamestown Mayor Samuel Teresi (center) meets with Troop 20044 and Judy Cranston (right) March 8

In Memory of Congresswoman Louise Slaughter

Today we offer our condolences to the family of Congresswoman Louise Slaughter. We celebrate the work she did for our communities and the paths she cleared for equality.

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Girl Scouts of Western New York Council Members, girls, and CEO Judy Cranston meet with Congresswoman Slaughter in 2017

At Girl Scouts, we talk a lot about being a G.I.R.L., or a go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, and leader. We want all of our girls to grow up knowing how strong and capable they are, and to us Louise Slaughter embodied this idea perfectly.

Her entire life was dedicated to seeing the needs and fighting for the necessary changes. She went after what she wanted and kept finding new ways to change her world. She never stopped leading and pushing for what was right and good, regardless of what anyone said or did against her.

The loss of her sister to pneumonia in childhood led her to obtain degrees in microbiology and public health. Later, her work and marriage brought her to New York where her involvement with community groups took off. Here she joined the League of Women Voters and Scouting in New York, but still saw greater needs. Her fight with the environmental group Perinton Greenlands Association to protect Hart’s Woods brought her into politics.

Slaughter ran her first race in 1971, losing to the incumbent Republican Walter G. A. Muench. She narrowed the margin in 1973, but fell for a second time to Muench. Nevertheless, she persisted, and finally in 1975 was voted to the Monroe County Legislature. She wouldn’t lose another election in her more than 40 years of public service.

From here, she became the regional coordinator in the Rochester area to then New York Secretary of State Mario Cuomo. In 1979, he was elected to lieutenant governor and she remained in her role.

As the 1982 election grew closer, Slaughter was approached by Democratic supporters encouraging her to run for State Assembly. After two successful terms, she made her move into the U.S. House of Representatives, a role she would hold for 30 years.

She became the first democrat elected in her district since 1910, and the first woman to represent Western New York.

Here are just a few highlights from everything Slaughter contributed while in office:

  • $500 million for breast cancer research
  • Mandated language in new legislation guaranteeing that women and minorities would be included in clinical health trials
  • Helped establish Office of Research on Women’s Health in the National Institutes of Health legislation
  • Co-authored the Violence Against Women Act and wrote the legislation to make the Office on Violence Against Women a permanent fixture in the United States Department of Justice
  • Helped create the Women’s Progress Commemorative Committee through her work on the Women’s Progress Commemoration Act
  • Introduced and fought to pass the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, what she believes is her greatest achievement

Slaughter saw the needs of so many, fighting for changes to help women, minorities, soldiers – all of us. Everything she did was in an effort to make the world better for everyone.

In our own Western New York, she worked to secure funding and helped improve our communities.

Because of all of this and more, we are heartbroken to hear this news. She was an amazing woman who supported our girls. She encouraged them to pursue their dreams and raise their voices for what they believe in.

May her legacy of being a go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, and leader carry on through others who see the issues in our world and believe they can make a difference.

Thank you, Louise, for what you did and how you inspired us.

Summer Camp Week is Coming!

We’re all SO EXCITED for camp this summer at Girl Scouts of Western New York. Soon it will be warm and time for all of the great activities we’ve planned for this summer. Before it’s actually time to go to camp, we have a way to get even more psyched!

Summer Camp Week is an annual celebration of all things camp, and this year it’s happening April 16 to 19. In just over a month, we’ll have a week of fun leading up to our first open house at Camp Piperwood in Fairport!

2018 Camp Week Flyer

Monday kicks off the week with an invitation for you to come to our Buffalo, Jamestown, Lockport and Rochester locations from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. to share your favorite camp memories. We’ll keep what you share on display and even share on our social media accounts!

On Tuesday, you can stop by Lockport, Buffalo, or Rochester again from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. to get the camp craft party started! We’ll have several options for you to come and complete and take home!

The next night, we’ll hold a free camp webinar at 6:30 p.m. to provide some more information about camp.

Thursday we’re taking the party online for our annual Twitter Party! From 3 to 7 p.m. we’ll be tweeting with you and giving away prizes every half hour! Follow us at @girlscoutswny 🙂

Finally we wrap everything up with our open house at Camp Piperwood! This is your chance to see the grounds, make some s’mores, take a hike, and more!

It’s going to be a great week, and we can’t wait for everyone to join in the fun with us! Speaking of fun, have you registered for camp yet?

Cookies are HERE!

Cookie season is one of the most anticipated times of the year. The much beloved Girl Scout cookies are only available for a few months, causing the mania to set in when the sale finally begins. But what about the actual delivery?

In order to bring those delicious cookies to Western New York, a mega drop is held at several warehouses across the council. A truly incredible amount of cookies are dropped off, organized, and given to our Girl Scouts to deliver to their supporters.

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It’s a collaborative process between Council and the troops to ensure each drop is a success every year. This makes it a great time to interact with leaders and girls as well as bring the joy of cookies to Western New York.

This year, a nor’easter threatened part of the drop Friday, March 2. While winds and rain assaulted the East Coast, that precipitation turned to snow in Western New York bringing more than a foot overnight in some areas. Conditions were terrible, and Council actually closed all of their locations due to the weather.

But cookies couldn’t be stopped.

Despite the snow and closings, the drops continued as scheduled, and everyone received their cookies. Hopefully you’ve had a chance to enjoy some of your own!

Thank you everyone who supports our girls as they learn valuable leadership and business skills through cookie sales. You’re helping to raise the leaders of tomorrow, and that tastes as good as it feels.

World Thinking Day 2018

Recently Girl Scouts of Western New York had the opportunity to once again participate in World Thinking Day, an international event coordinated by the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGS). Every February 22, Girl Scouts and Girl Guides from 146 countries celebrate by doing the same activities around the same theme.

This year, “Impact” was the selected theme, and girls were encouraged to show and share how they help impact their communities all around the world. #ThisisImpact showcased the girls’ efforts across social media platforms.

It’s been almost 100 years since WAGGS first began celebrating World Thinking Day, and it still represents a day of international friendship. While all girls enjoy the same activities to connect them from country to country, the day also shines a light on issues affecting young women. It’s a tradition that began in 1926 and isn’t going away any time soon.

In Western New York, we celebrated a few days early. Girls from around the council gathered at Camp Windy Meadows to spend the day doing Impact activities together.

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Click here to see the full album! 

Camp Season is Here!

Well, maybe it’s still a few months from when we actually get to go to camp, but the Girl Scouts of Western New York are deep into our preparations. We want to make sure you have the best experience possible!

One of the ways we want to reach out to you is through Facebook, and specifically videos. Join us live in the weeks leading to camp to learn more about what sessions we’ll have this year, what you need to pack for camp, details about the grounds, and more! Let us know your questions so we can answer them!

Below is our first of the year, featuring camp lovers Susan and Gale discussing the basics of camp, like where they are, what you do at camp, the different types of camp, and much, much more!

This summer, every girl is invited to camp like a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker and leader!

Learn more and register for camp today! https://www.gswny.org/en/camp/summer-camps.html