Sunday, November 24, 2019

Supporting Female Excellence: GSCCC Scholarship Awarded

Gold Award Girl Scout Jazzlyn Childs was awarded funds from the GSCCC She Believes She Can, So She Does Scholarship fund at our 2019 Famous Formers Luncheon. She currently attends Tabb High in Yorktown and plans on studying National Security at Virginia Tech!

The She Believes She Can, So She Does Scholarship fund was launched two years ago with a gift from Girl Scout Alum Kate Godby. It is available to girls who have completed their Girl Scout Gold Award and have plans to pursue higher education opportunities to include vocational training and undergraduate education, fueling the leadership and workforce pipeline. Writing an essay on what the Girl Scout Promise and Law has meant to them is part of the application process. Here is an excerpt from Jazzlyn’s essay describing her Gold Award project:

“I created the Reform the Homeless Initiative.  The greatest mistake we can make as citizens in our communities is to believe we cannot make a difference in helping the homeless.  I believe it is the responsibility of not only the Governor, but public citizens to help those who are in need.  This past summer, I solicited support and led a team of over 15 volunteers including several volunteers from the More Than a Conquerors Church of Virginia Beach to completely refurbish the Good Samaritan Homeless Shelter located in Virginia Beach. Teamwork, leadership and obedience to the Girl Scout Law and Promise made this event successful.  To sustain the Reform the Homeless Initiative, the More Than Conquerors Church Outreach Committee has agreed to provide future project support Good Samaritans Homeless shelters and sponsorship letters will be sent to Tide, Gain, Proctor and Gamble and other companies for donations of needed supplies. 

I am very proud to say that I exemplify the Girl Scout Promise and Law. This scholarship will assist me in going to college so that one day I can be an adult capable of strength in the face of adversity, capable of giving back to the community, and capable of being an example to others.”

Congratulations, again, to Jazzlyn!

See photos from the 2019 Famous Formers Luncheon >>

Friday, November 22, 2019

ICYMI: 2019 Famous Formers Luncheon


Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast hosted our annual Famous Formers Luncheon yesterday afternoon. We celebrated the success and commitment to leadership demonstrated by our 2019 Famous Former honorees. Their guests, other Girl Scout alum, legislative representatives, and other local Girl Scout supporters were in attendance at Hilton Norfolk The Main for the occasion.

During the reception, Gold Award Girl Scout Jazzlyn Childs received the She Believes She Can, So She Does Scholarship to support her interest in higher education. We also awarded Townebank as our very first Corporate G.I.R.L. Champion. The acronym stands for go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, and leader. Townebank has consistently contributed to community initiatives and a workplace culture that provides opportunities for girls and women to thrive, following our Girl Scout ideals!

Keynote speaker Dr. Patricia Turner delivered a captivating speech about the mistreatment she faced as a young girl integrating into a predominantly white high school at the height of mass resistance in Virginia. Despite years of bullying from her peers, teachers, and some neighborhood children, Dr. Turner excelled in academics. She graduated in the top of her high school class, graduated cum laude in her college mathematics program, and went on to earn her Master's degree.

"Your story speaks to the values of inclusion, understanding, and equality that Girl Scouts strive to represent," GSCCC CEO Tracy Keller said following Dr. Turner's keynote speech. 

Prior to the reception, our GSCCC staff had an opportunity to speak at length with her about her life before becoming a member of the Norfolk 17. She spoke warmly about the role of her family and Girl Scouts in building the character and confidence she needed to overcome the challenges that she later faced in life. "Girl Scouting taught you how to talk to people, how to share your feelings, and how to get along with others. It taught us that if someone is bullying you, that is not the world. You can overcome this," Dr. Turner shared.

We would love to know how Girl Scouts has impacted YOUR life, too! Share your Girl Scouts story with us on social media!

See photos from the 2019 Famous Formers Luncheon >>

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Gold Award Spotlight: Peer Tutoring for Spanish Speaking Students


Congratulations to Cameron Hart, a graduate of Oscar Smith High School, who has earned her Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest honor and achievement a girl can earn in Girl Scouts.

For her Gold Award project, Peer Tutoring for Spanish Speaking Students, Cameron addressed the topic of global citizenship. She assisted Spanish speaking students with learning the English language and assimilating into American culture. 

Cameron led a peer-tutoring session for ESL (English as a Second Language) students.  She gathered the information and concepts from the Virginia Standards of Learning so the students would be up to date on the correct information.  She created pre-test, post-test and multiple activities.  Cameron made sure to evaluate her peer-tutoring program by providing surveys to ESL students and then improving the lacking aspect of her program. 

She also assisted the ESL students to connect with the community by organizing events.  Cameron planned meetings where they would discuss global topics with the ESL students, peer-tutors and adult mentors.    

Cameron compiled a binder with material used throughout her project, so members of the local Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority can continue to support this project further and use her peer-tutoring program.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Gold Award Spotlight: Women's Empowerment Club


Congratulations to Gold Award Girl Scout Olivia from Moyock, North Carolina! She has earned the highest honor and achievement a girl can earn in Girl Scouts – the Gold Award. Olivia is a rising junior at JP Knapp Early College and the daughter of Katherine and John McDonald.

After noticing a need for an all-girl safe space in her community, much like the one Girl Scouts has provided her with, Olivia decided to create a “Women’s Empowerment Club” for her Gold Award project. The club members, made up of girls at her school, became pen pals with girls at a local elementary school which allowed them to send empowering communication messages on topics such as bullying prevention. By being pen pals with the younger girls, Olivia and her friends became positive role models.

Along with implementing the pen pal activity, Olivia also organized a women’s empowerment event that included meditation, self-defense and other improvement activities.

“The most successful aspect of my project was creating a safe place for students,” she explained. “I noticed that during our meetings, students felt much more comfortable talking about their struggles with certain issues.”

Olivia’s project will be sustained through the school with organized positions available for club members.


Thursday, November 7, 2019

Help GSCCC recycle 40,000 bags!

GSCCC is partnering with Trex Company, Inc. to recycle 500 pounds of plastic bags (that’s over 40,000 bags!) from now until April 22, 2020 (Earth Day). If we hit our goal by the deadline, Trex will donate an outdoor bench made of recycled bags to us! Help us make the world a greener place.

Here is how you can help:
  • Collect your plastic bags
  • Weigh your bags using a luggage scale or food scale from your kitchen
  • Drop the bags off at any Food Lion location in southeastern Virginia or northeastern North Carolina
  • Email the weight of the bags to philanthropy@gsccc.org




Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Remembering Girl Scout Leader Kathy Bennett


On Saturday, we lost a great volunteer – Kathy Bennett. Many of you knew Kathy as the go-to volunteer when it came to Girl Scout Cookies in Norfolk. Since the late 90s, she has been a service unit cookie coordinator. Her daughter, Katie, now a professional counselor and mother of a Girl Scout, was a top cookie seller and held that honor for many years. Girl Scout Cookie time was just as important to Kathy and her family as a national holiday. Kathy planned out her family’s schedule accordingly and opened her home as a cookie cupboard. A few years ago, after Kathy lost her husband, Girl Scout leaders from her unit wanted to show their appreciation. They surprised her and painted each room of Kathy’s house!

When Cookie Rallies were introduced by Little Brownie Bakers in 2002, Kathy embraced the idea with gusto and created games and activities that ignited the interest and enthusiasm of girls and parents. Each year, Kathy accepted the challenge to keep her “clan” entertained while teaching them the 5 essential cookie skills. News got out about Kathy and her rallies, and in 2005 WTKR popped in and covered her rally!

While cookies were an important part of Kathy’s Girl Scout experience, her top love and cherished role was as a troop leader. She led many Girl Scout troops over the years at St. Pius Catholic Church and was known for producing over 60 Gold Award Girl Scouts – thanks to her extraordinary troop leadership. Kathy kept in touch with most of them and held reunions. She helped others get excited about troop leadership as well and served on her service unit’s service team, helping train and mentor new leaders.  

In addition to making sure St. Pius had an active and strong Girl Scout program, Kathy also served on the Hampton Roads Catholic Youth Scouting Committee where she helped lead Catholic Scouting Teen Retreatorees. In more recent years, she added a role in support of the church community she so loved and joined the St. Pius after-school program team.  

For her years of dedication and commitment, Kathy was honored by the Council with several national Girl Scout awards that included: Appreciation Pin, Honor Pin, Thanks Badge I and Thanks Badge II. Kathy was 72 when she passed on October 26. She is the widow of Charles Bennett. Left to cherish her memory: her daughter, Katie McCurdy and her husband, Blake; two sisters, Pat Kapinski and Marge Reinhardt and her husband, Ken; and three grandchildren, Emma Sarauw, Seth Sarauw, and Russell McCurdy.

The family will receive friends at Hollomon-Brown Funeral Home, Tidewater Drive Chapel on Friday, Nov. 1, from 6 to 8 p.m. The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Pius X Catholic Church on Saturday, Nov. 2, at 11 a.m. A private interment will be held at the Albert G. Horton, Jr., Memorial Veterans Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to St. Pius X Catholic School. Condolences may be offered to the family at: www.hollomon-brown.com

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

The Virginia Women’s Monument is Dedicated on Oct. 14

Seven bronze statues of women unveiled at nation’s first monument honoring full scope of women’s contributions & achievements


GSCCC girls unveiling a statue at the Virginia Women's Monument.
Historic Virginia women in bronze assembled on Capitol Square in Richmond to share their stories and have their voices be heard across four centuries of Virginia history. Voices from the Garden: The Virginia Women’s Monument was dedicated on Monday, October 14.

Girl Scouts representing three councils in the Commonwealth – Girl Scouts of the Commonwealth of Virginia, Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast (GSCCC) and Girl Scouts of the Virginia Skyline -  unveiled seven bronze statues at the dedication: Cockacoeske, Pamunkey chieftain; Anne Burras Laydon, Jamestown colonist; Mary Draper Ingles, frontierswoman; Elizabeth Keckly, dressmaker and confidante to Mary Todd Lincoln; Laura Copenhaver, entrepreneur in the textile industry; Virginia Randolph, educator; Adèle Clark, suffragist and artist. More statues will be added as they are funded and completed. Girl Scouts selected to do the unveiling honors from GSCCC were: Cadettes Maureen Keller and Elsa Kinnear, along with Juniors Alexandria Washburn and Brogan Beall.


The Virginia Women’s Monument is the nation’s first on the grounds of any state capitol to showcase the full range of achievements and contributions made by remarkable women in a variety of fields and endeavors. When completed, the monument’s life-size bronze statues, along with a Wall of Honor inscribed with the names of 230 notable women and room to add more names in the future, will help tell the whole story about the diversity of accomplishments, ethnicity and thought that shaped the Commonwealth of Virginia over the past 400 years.

"For far too long, we have overlooked the transformative contributions of women and other underrepresented groups to the history of this country and this Commonwealth," said Governor Northam in his welcoming remarks. "I am proud that with the addition of this women’s monument to Capitol Square, we are finally telling a more complete story about Virginia. We will continue fighting to expand opportunities for women and ensure real gender equality in the Commonwealth.”  

More than $3.7 million has been raised through generous contributions by individuals, corporations and nonprofit foundations; to date, approximately $100,000 is still needed to complete the monument. The granite plaza and the Wall of Honor were unveiled in October 2018. Each bronze statue required a financial investment of $200,000 in order to be commissioned for sculpting by the talented team of artisans, both men and women, at StudioEIS in Brooklyn, N.Y.   
For more information about the Virginia Women’s Monument, visit http://womensmonumentcom.virginia.gov