Doris Chong was a Girl Scout in high school some 35 years ago. She went camping with friends, learned the skills necessary to be an effective public speaker and was injected with confidence and praise about her worth by volunteers and other scouts.
Her experiences with Girl Scouts taught her to focus on tasks, finish what she started, and to take action on causes she considered worthy.
“Scouting is something that stays with you as you grow older,” Chong said. “It’s in your blood.”
Chong got her three daughters involved in Girl Scouts because of the benefits she felt they would get from the program. Her youngest daughter is in high school and working toward a Gold Award, the highest achievement in girl scouting. She is working with Baptist Hospital to develop a support and awareness program for children with diabetes.
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Chong volunteers as a service unit manager for the Pinecrest-area Girl Scouts, which consists of 48 troops and about 450 girls.
“You watch these girls’ phenomenal transformation,” she said. “When they first come in, they’re little daisies wanting to do arts and crafts, sing songs and make friends. By middle school, they really start getting a sense of who they are.”
The Girl Scouts of Tropical Florida is looking for girls and adult volunteers to join the organization.
Data released by the Girl Scout Research Institute showed that girls want to connect with other girls, be mentored, do it all in a safe space where they can address their concerns without being judged. Girl Scouts is striving to be that for them, but they need more volunteers to make this possible.
“Girl Scouts has provided a safe, fun, and engaging place for girls and adult volunteers to lead and thrive for over 100 years,” said Anna Maria Chávez, CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA. “We know the majority of volunteers feel their Girl Scout experience has helped them both personally and professionally, but in many places throughout the country, the lack of volunteers is what keeps girls on waiting lists. Every adult who volunteers for Girl Scouts can help us bring fun, new experiences to at least five girls. Imagine what that can do to shape the next generation of female leaders.”
For more information, contact Ansley Ross at 305-253-4841 ext. 255.