By: Kylie Pierce, Troop Leader in Rome
When I was old enough to be a scout, Daisy troops were just getting started, and there were none in my small town, and by the time I was a Junior, we had moved to an even more rural locale. Fortunately for me, a few women (including my mother) took the initiative to start a scout troop.
I took pride in being a scout, and made sure I was always in uniform and neatly turned out at every meeting. My mother had somehow tracked down a nattily-printed trefoil blouse, and it fortunately fit me into my Junior years. I still have my vest and sash, still have my top cookie seller badges, still have my Brownie beanie. I went to camp, slept over in a museum in Philadelphia, and made lifelong friends. My former leader even attended my wedding!
But most of all, I have the skills that I brought with me into adulthood. Sure, I can make a mean vegabond stove, but I can also write grant applications that garner 6-figure awards. Where I once was pleased as punch to sew my own situpon, I now sit upon several committees and boards that are taking on the monumental task of bettering the community that I live in.
Reminiscing about scouting with my co-leader, Jamie, at work one day, we both made the decision that we wanted to participate first-hand in mentoring and leading our own future leaders. And Girl Scout programs are doing just that. Did you know that 38% of Girl Scout alumnae attend college,vs. 28% of non-Girl Scouts? That 77% vote regularly, vs. 63% of non-alumnae? And that 70% of Congresswomen, and 80% of women executives and business owners, were former Girl Scouts? We must be doing something right.
Even so, the idea of leading Daisies was a bit daunting. I have no children of my own, and my last experience with a group of 5-year-olds was nearly 15 years ago! Still, something in me was drawn to building leadership in these future young women. I wanted them to believe what I already knew about every girl: she has the power to do anything she chooses. So I laced up my boots, dusted off my friendship squeeze, and signed up.
Knowing I have the power to help girls reach their goals is a great feeling, and I look forward to a great year, growing the seeds of leadership in our budding Daisies.