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Talk to me about girl scouts


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I didn't do girl scouts, but I'm thinking about starting my girls.  They need community.


Can anyone tell me what it is like?  What sort of fees and extra stuff can I expect?  What is the time commitment?  


Would my 12 year old feel awkward about jumping in now?

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I'm a cadette leader with a multilevel troop that's been together since the oldest girls were brownies. There are separate meetings for juniors, brownies and daisies. T and I have had a blast, but this depends on the fit between the girl and the troop. Some troops camp a lot, some prefer crafty stuff, some are very focused on earning badges and awards, it depends on the girls' interests and the leaders' skill set.


Annual dues to join GSA are $25 (Oct-Oct) plus any dues your troop charges to cover activities and snacks. Time commitment also varies by troop. We're a fairly laid back troop and we do one long meeting/month which gives us enough time to do a badge with minimal homework plus one big activity with all the different levels (Halloween party, skating rink excursion, cookie rally, etc). Some troops meet twice a month or weekly. We don't have troop dues because we have enough cookie and fall product money to fund everything. But newer troops might have dues and/or shoestring budgets. We certainly did when we were new.


Trinqueta is also a Mariner which is a special interest group in our council dedicated to sailing. That's a separate organization from our troop and is mainly run via Facebook group with 3 weekend sailing camps in the fall and in the spring plus sailing schools and special events. Another girl in our troop belongs to the horseback riding SIG. There is also a backpacking SIG that organizes trips almost every weekend plus special summer camps. The sailing weekends cost $35 and include food, lodging and sailing equipment and supervision. It's an amazing opportunity to participate in an activity that's normally very pricey.


If you're 12 yo is in 6th grade, she'd be at the beginning of cadettes (6-8 grades). It would be a good time to start, imho. But you can really join anytime and have fun.


As the girls have gotten older, they've stopped wearing uniforms to meetings. We do have troop t-shirts which are handy for group activities where we need to keep track of everyone. Our troop paid for them because we had the money available. They cost $10 apiece. Brownies and daisies usually want the uniform and that runs about $20-25 for the vest or sash or tunic plus the council and troop badges.


Overall, GSA is a low cost, fun activity with some great opportunities to try new things. The catch is you need to find a troop or SIG that's a good fit.


ETA: If you're in Houston, PM me and I'll send you the SIG info.

Edited by chiguirre
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I'm the leader of a cadette troop that is not multilevel. We have a small group--just 7 girls, 6 of Whole have been in the troop since kindergarten. We got a new girl this year, and she slid right into the troop like she had always been there. My daughter and I really enjoy doing Girl Scouts. So far this year we have probably spent about $100 or so on activities, including a camping weekend. Being in the ATL area, we have several Girl Scout camps within short driving distance.


Our troop works well because my coleader and I have very different strengths and comfort zones. For example, whenever we do an activity in the city, I am in charge because I grew up going to big city events and went to grad school in Atlanta. She is in charge of the camping stuff. (I am more of a hotel/beach condo kind of girl, although I do go camping with the girls and enjoy myself.)


At the 12 year old age, our girls are planning their own meetings and activities now. We are just there to remind them to be on task, run the bank account, and fill out the proper paperwork. We meet twice a month for meetings and usually have one or two other activities a month--zoo day, robotics day, camping, trip to TV studio, overnight in the aquarium, etc.

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