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On The Cover: Girl Scouts Celebrate 111 Years!GBy Paige Wolfirls just wanna have fun! Butthey can also be leaders, servetheir community, and make a difference – and Girls Scouts empowers young girls to do so. Beyond taking action to make the world a better place, Girl Scouts promotes female empowerment and encourages young girls to embrace and celebrate themselves and their peers. And acelebration is most certainly in order – Girls Scouts is turning 111 on March 12.Since its inception in 1912, Girl Scouts has led countless efforts to make a difference in the world, truly shaping America’s history. Girl Scouts offers the opportunity to our youngest generations to follow their dreams and build the confidence to be leaders.These young ladies will soon be thewomen shaping our world, and by just taking a look back at their history for the past 111 years, rest assured, the future of our world is in good hands.One Brownie whispers into the ear of another Brownie, 1963, Courtesy Girl Scouts of the USAGirl Scouts Celebrate 111 Year AnniversaryGBy Sarah Carlsonirl Scouts have good reason to celebrate their birthday— March 12, 1912, the day JulietteGordon Low started the organization in her hometown of Savannah, Georgia.At a time when women in the United States couldn’t yet vote and were expected to stick to strict social norms, encouraging girls to embrace their unique strengths and create their own opportunities was game- changing.Now, Girl Scouts is turning 111. It’s the first and largest girl-led organization in the world. And girls today are more empowered than ever.“My favorite thing about Girl Scouts is selling cookies because I get to interact with new people. I also enjoy the fun activities that we do as a troop,” said Alicia B., of San Antonio, a Girl Scout Junior in Troop 149.“My favorite thing about Girl Scouts is that I get to eat all the cookies and make new friends,” added her sister, Emma B, a Girl Scout Daisy in Troop 1439.Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas is celebrating Girl Scouts’ birthday during its monthly Second Saturday event on March 11 at the Sally Cheever Girl Scout Leadership Center. It’s a time for looking at how far the movement has come and for planning the exciting future that awaits.The history of this country for the past 111 years is intertwined with the history of Girl Scouts. From the Great Depression, when Girl Scouts participated in relief efforts by collecting clothing and food for those in need, to World War II, when Girl Scout troops operated bicycle courier services, ran Farm Aide projects, and sponsored Defense Institutes that taught women survival skills and techniques for comforting children during air raids.Girl Scouts continued to push for inclusiveness and equality, especially throughout the middle of the 20th century, and focused on helping people overcome prejudices and advocate for issues such as the environment.By the 1980s, Girl Scouts was expanding and modernizing. The types of badges and programs girls pursued evolved to include technology, a focus that remains today with STEM programming—along with a push to stay connected to nature and the greatGirl Scouts of Southwest Texas members—girls and volunteers—pose with CEO MajGen Angie Salinas, U.S. Marine Corps (Ret.), at center, at the Sally Cheever Girl Scout Leadership Center in San Antonio, Texas.6www.stoneoakhighlights.comMarch 2023Archery Lesson at Camp Brooklyn, c.1920 – photo courtesy Girl Scouts of USAoutdoors. The new millennium saw a focus on the healthy development of girls, and Girl Scouts continues to embrace girls of all backgrounds and abilities and encourage them to be their authentic selves.That movement—where every girl could unlock her full potential, find lifelong friends, and make the world a better place—has remained constant. That, and Girl Scout Cookies, which date back to 1917Girl Scouts portage a canoe in 1980 - photo courtesy Girl Scouts of USAand started being sold commercially by troops in the 1930s.Being a Girl Scout makes a difference. The Girl Scout Research Institute found in its 2021 report on alumni that participating in Girl Scouts is a powerful factor for developing courage, confidence, and character, which in turn builds a foundation for success in education and careers, enables a lifetime of leadership, and provides high levels of lifesatisfaction. Alums say being Girl Scouts set them on a path for achievement, connected them to something bigger than themselves, and helped them develop their passions and interests.Learn more about Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas and how you can be a part of the fun at

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