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  • Mentoring Matters: Meet Marice Band of Miami Beach

    Being a Girl Scout Volunteer is much more than teaching girls about cookies, camping and crafts. Our volunteers are role models, mentors and guides. They are there for girls as they experience new things and build skills that develop courage, confidence and character.

    We aren’t the only ones who recognize the impact that Girl Scout volunteers have in the lives of girls. Check out this amazing segment on mentorship featuring Local Girl Scout volunteer, Marice Band. As a Girl Scout volunteer for the past 25 years (yes, 25 years), she has touched the lives of so many Girl Scouts.

    “Marice just has this wonderful way of ensuring Girl Scout traditions are part of everything the girls do, all while moving at the speed of girls and staying current and relevant,” says Lori Ross, Director of Programs and Troop Support.

    Marice is the Girl Scout Community Leader on Miami Beach. She also leads a Girl Scout Troop comprised of 47 Girl Scouts.

    A veteran photojournalist, Marice was also a member of The Miami Herald news team that won the Pulitzer Prize Gold Medal for the paper's coverage of Hurricane Andrew. Her work has been published in such magazines as Newsweek, Time, and U.S. News and World Report, and has been honored by The Inter American Press Association, National Press Photog...

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    Girl Scouts can do anything! This is especially true for one troop who fought for clean water in a community with a contaminated water supply, which led to 1.7 million dollar water project. In the Fall of 2014, Girls Scouts of Tropical Florida Troop #713 took to the streets warning neighbors of possible DDT contamination in well water, after two sisters, Kathe and Sienna Labiste, found out their well had been contaminated. The Troop went door to door, distributing their homemade flyers alerting neighbors of contamination, informing them about the dangers of DDT toxins and providing them information on how to get their wells tested. After alerting Florida Department of Health and other agencies, Assistant Troop Leader, Luis Labiste and his family met with Miami-Dade District 8 Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava. Sooner thereafter, the commissioner arranged a multi-disciplinary meeting that included Miami-Dade County Water and Sewer Department, Miami-Dade County Public Works, Florida Department of Environmental Protection. This meeting set the wheels in motion towards developing possible solutions. During this time, the troop notified neighbors door to door, once more advising them of upcoming town hall meetings regarding the contaminated well issue in the community. With a lot of hard work from Commissioner Cava and her team, alongside the efforts of Troop #713, funds were allocated for the Kendalwood Estates Well Contamination...

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  • The Miami Foundation awards Girl Scouts of Tropical Florida in 2017 Community Grants program

    Girl Scouts of Tropical Florida believes that all girls deserve the opportunity to develop into tomorrow’s leaders. It’s in this important work that The Miami Foundation Community Grants program invested $25,000, supporting the Decisions for Your Life program. Decisions prepares disadvantaged girls to thrive in school and life by promoting educational readiness and personal resiliency.

    Decisions addresses the need for proven, high-quality educational and leadership development opportunities for girls ages 5-17 who reside in low income communities and affordable housing developments.  Decisions provides girls with access to the full Girl Scout Leadership Experience (GSLE). The program serves approximately 300 girls during the school year, offering weekly after school/evening programs and weekend activities. All girls in the program come from low-income households.  

    “With the Foundation’s Community Grant, Girl Scouts of Tropical Florida will continue to make a long-term difference in the lives of girls,” says Chelsea Wilkerson, Girl Scouts of Tropical Florida CEO.

    The Girl Scout Leadership Experience (GSLE) offered in the Decisions program has a proven impact on the lives of girls.  The four experiential pillars of GSLE are:

    • Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM)

    • Getting outdoors

    • Developing life skills

    • Entrepreneurship.  

    “Our Decis...

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  • Local Girl Scouts take action, earn prestigious Gold Award

    When most people think of Girl Scouts, they think of “cookies and camping” — both important components of the Girl Scout experience, of course! But arguably the most impactful part of Girl Scouting is the earning of the Girl Scout Gold Award. Comparable to the Boy Scouts of America’s Eagle Scout, this prestigious award represents the highest achievement in Girl Scouting and challenges girls ages 14 – 17 to initiate meaningful, sustainable change locally, nationally, and/or globally through unique “Take Action” projects of their own creation.

    This year, 14 local Girl Scouts created dynamic projects, including support to children in the foster care system, conservation of native species, creating awareness around teen dating violence and much more.

    Our research confirms the lifetime benefits for girls of earning the Gold Award and the impact it has on their lives. According to The Power of the Girl Scout Gold Award: Excellence in Leadership and Life, a report by the Girl Scout Research Institute, girls who earn the Gold Award display more positive life outcomes than non-Girl Scout alumnae.

    These outcomes pertain to positive sense of self, life satisfaction, leadership, life success, community service, and civic engagement. Other findings from the report include the following:

      Gold Award recipients have had more leadership experiences in volunteer activities (66 percent vs. 37 percent of non-alumnae), school (54 percent vs. 39 percent of...

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  • Local Girl Scout Honored by State

    Local Girl Scout and Coral Gables Senior High student Annie Farrell of Miami, Fla. understands the complicated process of applying for colleges. “As the daughter of a first-generation college student, I’m aware not everybody lives with the expectation that college is the next step,” shares Farrell.

    As she was applying for colleges herself, Farrell was inspired to develop a college prep program for at-risk youth as her Girl Scout Gold Award project. As a result of her program’s success, Farrell was named one of Florida’s top two youth volunteers of 2017 by The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards-- a nationwide program honoring young people for outstanding acts of volunteerism.

    Farrell knew she wanted to help at-risk youth navigate the complicated and overwhelming college application process.

    In her project’s planning stage, Farrell researched college application processes and collected tips for success. She then recruited two University of Miami admissions counselors, three Miami Herald writers and the education director of a local cultural center to help conduct three workshops for Casa Valentina residents.

    This series of college-prep workshops, organized by Farrell, assists students who have aged out of the foster care system.

    During the first workshop, the counselors walked through the best way to complete college applications and residents received helpful tips that Farrell compiled. In the following workshops, the journalists addres...

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