Girl Scouts has a rich history of empowering girls to help improve their communities. Since 1912, Girl Scout groups throughout the country have participated in community service projects addressing everything from caring for animals, baking for troops, serving senior citizens to improving the environment. Community service projects such as tending a local garden at a school or church can be completed in one day. Other endeavors, such as adopting grandparents through the Silver Lining program can span multiple visits throughout the year. Whatever the group decides to undertake, girls learn the benefit of giving back to the community.
Items collected for the council-wide opportunities should be dropped off to the Resource Center at the Sally Cheever Girl Scout Leadership Center. Please include a completed Community Service Report for all service completed, whether it be council-sponsored or on your own.
Take Action is designed to elevate traditional Girl Scout community service from meeting an immediate need to advocacy projects that make change happen. Girls identify a cause they feel passionate about, and with advocacy and
action, make a change. Girls can create a Take Action project with each leadership journey they complete. Girl Scout Bronze, Silver and Gold Award projects are all Take Action projects.
Take Action projects encourage girls to think bigger and to address problems in such a way that positive change occurs. Girl Scouts can focus on accomplishing the following measurable outcomes from taking action:
- Girls can identify community needs.
- Girls are resourceful problem solvers.
- Girls advocate for themselves and others, locally and globally.
- Girls educate and inspire others to act.
- Girls feel empowered to make a difference in the world.
Here are seven steps to a successful Take Action project:
1. Map It—Investigate community needs and problem causes
2. Plan It—Prepare a Take Action plan
3. Do It—Act “with” the community
4. Think About It—Reflect on the project’s impact
5. Advocate for It—Demonstrate the importance of the issue to others
6. Be Proud of It—Celebrate the accomplishments
7. Keep It Going—Think about how the project could be sustained
Be Sure to Report Your Service!
A community service report form is located on most of the council-wide community service flyers; however, many times, girls prefer to forego the council opportunities and plan their own service projects. It's very important to report ALL service completed. The Community Service Report can be used to report any service, council-wide or on-your-own. Please take the time to complete the report so your community commitment is recognized.
Find out how to transform a service project into a service-LEARNING project, see Make Your Service a Service-LEARNING Experience.
Council-Wide Service Opportunities
Cookies for Heroes (on-going)
Feed the People: San Antonio Food Bank
Holiday Mail for Heroes Program (NEW)
Making Mother's & Father's Day Memories
Medina Children's Home Service Opportunity
Sleep Tight & Read
Silver Lining (Adopt-A-Nursing Home)
Ideas for Outdoor Community Service
More Community Service Ideas
Teen Service Opportunities
Presidential Volunteer Service Award
Show off your service! There are two levels and three categories of this award varying by age and hours of service completed within a 12-month period:
- Kids (14 and under): Bronze 50-74 hours; Silver 74-99 hours; and Gold 100+ hours
Young Adults (15-25): Bronze 100-174 hours; Silver 175-249 hours; and Gold 250+ hours
These hours must be completed within a 12-month time period. All girls who earn the Gold level (Kids and Young Adults) will be honored at Celebrations, the council-sponsored award ceremony. For Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas, the 12-month period for your service is from May 1-April 30. All other category certificates will be mailed. The community service can be with Girl Scouts, church, school, or any other community service projects that you are involved in. You must keep a log of all the hours you have volunteered, the person in charge needs to sign that you have completed these hours, and indicate where you have been volunteering. You may type or handwrite your hours. If you handwrite, it must be in pen and legible. Your logged hours need to be turned in not later than May 1. Volunteers make communities a brighter place to be! Please remember to put your first and last name, age, address, e-mail, phone number, service unit, troop/group number, and category you fall under with your hours.
In 2010, 87 girls provided almost 23,000 hours of service to the Southwest Texas community -- that's 7,000 more hours than 2009! Questions? See the list of the 2011 recipients here!
Thank you for your service in our community!