Thursday, April 21, 2011

Leader's Day

annielAs Girl Scouts, tomorrow marks a big day of celebration for our community. We will not only celebrate Earth Day but also Leader’s Day, which acts as a day of recognizing great leaders in our lives. In my 13 years as a Girl Scout, my leader – my mother – has been the backbone of my scouting experience. It is because of my mom I was introduced to Girl Scouting in the first place. My mother was a Girl Scout through her entire school career (led by my grandmother!) and I am so grateful she decided to involve me and my kindergarten classmates in the Girl Scout organization when she started a Daisy troop.

Certainly every level of scouting comes with its own difficulties as a leader, but my mom has taken each year in stride, welcoming new projects and bigger dreams with a smile and a can-do attitude. As Daisies, my troop and I loved crazy, MESSY craft projects, and my mom was always enthusiastic, providing us with fun activities at every meeting. When we bridged to Brownies, we couldn’t wait to go on our first camping trip, and my mom jumped into action, organizing a fun campout, while still including us girls in the planning process.

With my mom, everything – from selling cookies to planning trips to setting up fun little meetings – involved troop input; my mom never simply took over a project just to get the job done! This allowed my troop to become truly invested in every Girl Scout project we completed, and made each activity a learning experience. As we got older, our projects got bigger, and my mom began giving my troop more responsibilities. We organized our own meetings, held fundraisers for international Destination trips, and planned and completed our Girl Scout Gold Award. But even with our newfound independence, my mother was always there to provide support and input in everything we did.

I recently mentored a Daisy troop at my old elementary school, and as I led their meeting, I heard my mother talking with their leaders. My mom insisted “The only advice I can give you is to have fun, because the minute you stop having fun, you’ll quit!” As I near the end of my senior year, I look back on my life as a Girl Scout thus far and I realize that the badges I earned, the trips I went on, the awards I received all pale in comparison to the fun I’ve had in Girl Scouting, and it thrills me to know my mom had just as much fun every step of the way! It is thanks to her and every Girl Scout leader and volunteer that is a part of this organization that we Girl Scouts get to have so much fun. It is also the reason we become the people we are today. So join us in celebrating National Leader’s Day tomorrow by remembering to say “thank you” to your troop leader or any other kind of leader your life. Remind them that they are making a difference in not only your life but the lives of so many others as well!

-Annie L.

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