The Girl Scouts of the United States of America (GSUSA) is a youth organization for girls who live in the United States of America. The Girl Scouts of the USA was founded by Juliette Gordon Low in 1912. She came up with the group after meeting with Robert Baden-Powell, the founder of scouting.
GSUSA's goal is to empower girls and help teach values, such as honesty, fairness, courage, compassion, character, sisterhood, confidence and citizenship through activities such as camping, community service, learning how to preform first aid, and earning badges and patches by learning practical skills.
Girl Scouting in the United States had officially begun on March 12th, 1912 when Juliette Gordon Low organized the first Girl Scout troop meeting, consisting of around 18 girls in Savannah, Georgia. It now has 3.7 million members. Juliette Gordon Low, who met Baden-Powell in London while she was living in the United Kingdom, had dreamed of giving the United States, and the world "something for all the girls".
Girl Scouts of the USA was originally called "Girl Guides of America". In 1913, it was changed to the Girl Scouts of the United States. The name was finally change to Girl Scouts of the United States of America in 1947.
GSUSA had begun with 18 members in 1912. In 1920, there were about 70,000 members. In 1930, there were over 200,000. As of 2013, there are over 3.2 million Girl Scouts in North America. Through its membership in the WAGGGS, there are over 10 million members in 145 countries.
The aim of the Girl Scouts is to help girls by pursuing four goals; developing their full potential; relating to others with increasing understanding, skills, respect, developing a meaningful set of values to guide their actions and make sound decisions, and contributing to the improvement of society.
List of Girl Scout CouncilsEdit
- See List of Councils for more information
The Girl Scout Promise can be made in English, Spanish, and American Sign Language. The promise is as follows:
On my honor, I will try:
To serve God and my country,
To help people at all times,
And to live by the Girl Scout Law.
I will do my best to be
Honest and Fair,
Friendly and Helpful,
Considerate and Caring,
Courageous and Strong, and
Responsible for what I say and do,
respect myself and others,
respect authority, use resources wisely,
make the world a better place, and
be a sister to every Girl Scout
"Do a Good Turn Daily"
Girl Scouts have several customs and traditions: camping, community service, singing, and money earning to support their activities.
World Thinking Day and "Girl Scouts' Own" are traditions throughout the world of Girl Scouting. World Thinking Day has occurred annually since February 22, 1926 (the birthday of Robert Baden-Powell and Olave Baden-Powell). On World Thinking Day, Girl Scouts and Guides around the world think about their sisters in other lands. Councils or local service units (associations) hold a celebration on, or near this day, in which each participating troop gives a presentation of the culture, and customs of a country selected by the troop. Many Girl Scouts celebrate Juliette Gordon Low's birthday on October 31. The parties often include Girl Scouts dressing up in Halloween costumes, and also serving cake.
A "Girl Scouts' Own" is a special ceremony that expresses the spirit of Girl Scouting when the girls reflect upon their feelings about Girl Scouting, and the world around them. A Girl Scouts' Own can have any theme, or may have none at all.
Awards and badgesEdit
Members can earn awards appropriate for their age level. Daises earn Learning Petals, Brownies earn Try-Its, Juniors earn Badges, and Charms and Interest Project awards for GS Cadettes, Seniors, and also Ambassadors.
The Girl Scouts of the USA celebrated the 100th anniversary of its founding by Juliette Low with a "Bridge to the Second Century" event on November 13th, 2011, at the GS National Convention in Huston, and other sites around the country.
United States president Barack Obama signed the "Girl Scouts of the USA Commemorative Coin Act" for the 100th Anniversary celebration. This act authorized the minting of 350,000 silver dollar coins in honor of Girl Scouts and the achievements of over 50 million women influenced by Girl Scouting during the last 100 years.