Camp is about more than just friendship bracelets and bonfires. Camp is a place where girls can truly learn how to be independent, take risks in a safe environment, and practice the everyday leadership skills that are the cornerstones of success. Every girl deserves this kind of opportunity to grow, learn, and lead. Unfortunately, sometimes families are unable to afford the cost of camp, or even the Girl Scout membership- this is where our Outreach Program comes in.
Our Outreach Program takes the Girl Scout Experience to community centers, Title 1 schools, and public housing authorities. Because of generous grants, and donations from partners like YOU, girls in our underserved communities have the opportunity to experience Girl Scouts- and that includes Girl Scout Camp. Take a look at some of their stories:
CAPTURING A SPARK
Trinity wants to be a photographer when she grows up. As soon as her camp group would take a break from the trails, horseback riding, or canoeing, Trinity would pull out her small silver camera to snap a few photos. The snapshots she captured weren’t just of her friends, but of a butterfly perched on a petal, an intricately woven spider web, or a salamander lying in a creek. Trinity has real talent. The excitement on her face when she saw a new creature, beautiful flowers, or a small creek was contagious.
With the view finder of her camera up to her eye, Trinity said,” I love to take pictures. I usually take pictures of people, but I really love taking pictures of the woods and animals. There are so many pictures I want to take here. I want to remember all this when I get home!” Camp may just seem like a lot of summer fun, but this short time at Camp WaBak ignited the spark of curiosity and passion for a little girl named Trinity. Because of her enthralling adventure at WaBak, Trinity aspires to be a nature photographer.
BUILDING CONFIDENCE AT CAMP
Tatiana is a shy 4th grader with impeccable manners and kind demeanor. You can often find her gazing off in thought or writing down her ideas in a small pink notebook. This summer was a season of “firsts” for Tatiana. Her first experience camping. The first time she rode a horse. The first time she jumped into a pool without holding her nose. Tatiana’s favorite first was canoeing, even though she really didn’t think she would like it at first. The canoe
seemed larger than life, and she was wary about working on a team. Worried she may be left out because she is so quiet. But when she stepped aboard the canoe, with paddle in hand, she took a chance. Once the canoe set off on the lake at Camp WaBak, the other girls began to praise Tatiana on guiding them. In an instant, the girl who was afraid and timid on the shore became confident and sure on the lake. Once Tatiana returned to the dock, she grinned ear to ear, “I really hope I get to come back next year. I didn’t think I would like canoeing, but I really want to do it again now!”
MAKING NEW FRIENDS: TWO- AND FOUR-LEGGED
Maritza has been a Girl Scout for quite a while now. The Outreach Team comes to her school at least once a month to meet and teach the girls how to lead with courage, confidence, and character. Maritza counts down the days until she can meet with her Girl Scout sisters again. She is extremely proud to recite the Girl Scout Promise for anyone who will listen. This summer was Maritza’s first summer camp experience. She loved the swimming, canoeing, and hiking, but she was set on riding a horse for the first time.
When it was finally time for her group to head to the stables, her feet couldn’t move fast enough. Maritza listened to the instruction with all the focus she could muster. She tugged on the helmet and buckled the strap. Then the time came. Maritza walked into the riding ring. It was her first time riding a horse, but she was absolutely fearless. She reached out her palm to the horse’s nose and let out a jubilant giggle as the horse gave a little nudge. Maritza made a new friend that day, “I’ve always wanted to ride a horse. It was even more fun that I thought it would be! I just want to hug him!”
These are real stories, of real girls who have experienced new adventures, gained confidence, and have been given the opportunity to lead because of Girl Scouts. When you give to Girl Scouts of South Carolina- Mountains to Midlands, girls like Maritza, Tatiana, and Trinity get to have life-changing experiences. They get to experience Girl Scouts.
Want to sponsor a girl and prepare her to empower herself through the Girl Scout Leadership Experience? Click here to be her hero.