Thursday, July 29, 2021

Bronze Award Spotlight: Bag Drive to Support Victims in Need

Girl Scout Juniors in Troop 723 Addison, Anastasia, Callie, Carly, Marissa, and Olivia earned their Bronze Award through their bag drive project, Supporting Victims in Need, to support the Albemarle Hopeline. 

The Albemarle Hopeline is a private, non-profit organization that provides comprehensive direct and preventive services to victims of family violence, sexual assault, and teen dating violence. They offer education, intervention, support, and transitional assistance to those that need it serving Pasquotank, Perquimans, Camden, Currituck, Chowan, and Gates counties in northeastern North Carolina.

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Girl Scouts in GSCCC Troop 723 from left to right: Carly, Addison, Anastasia, Olivia, Marissa, and Callie



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With the support of their Girl Scout Leader, Ashley Livermore, the girls decided they wanted to do a project to help others in the community. After researching various places, the Juniors learned about the Albemarle Hopeline and that many people, especially women, in domestic violence situations needed a way to get out of that situation as quickly as possible. Often, people escaping violent situations toss their belongings into a trash bag and leave immediately. Many of those individuals are also financially reliant on their partner and do not have enough money to make it on their own.


The Juniors wanted to help make this transition a little easier. The girls worked with staff from the Albemarle Hopeline and learned that the organization needed things like big duffle bags, luggage, suitcases, and totes. The organization could also use full-sized personal hygiene items like toothpaste, hair products, body wash, toothbrushes, feminine hygiene products, etc. to give to their clients. The Juniors made a plan and set it into motion. 


Step one was to find a location to host the bag drive. Jamie Pittman, owner of the Moyock Farm Market, generously allowed the girls to set up a table at the market. The girls made flyers to post around town and used social media to spread awareness. The day of the drive, the girls set up a table, made signs, collected bags and chatted with patrons for several hours. The Juniors also coordinated with Sandi Ayers, owner of Fusion Office Business Center (and GSCCC Girl Scout Leader), to use her business as a secondary drop off location. During the drive the Juniors collected over 70 Bags!



The next step was to gather toiletries to fill the bags. The Juniors asked local businesses to donate supplies, and the Juniors used some of their proceeds from their Girl Scout Cookie Program to shop for additional items. They had a strict budget and did a great job as a team to fill their carts. The girls were originally going to stuff the bags with hygiene items, but after chatting with the coordinators of the Albemarle Hopeline, they learned that it would be best to not stuff the bags as everyone has varying needs.

    


A few weeks later, the Juniors were able to drop off the bags and hygiene items to the Albemarle Hopeline in Elizabeth City, NC. The girls learned a little more about how the Albemarle Hopeline helps the community and how their hard work would help so many.


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The Juniors are looking forward to celebrating their Bronze Award accomplishment this summer with a trip to H2OBX Waterpark! They worked hard and their efforts will be helping countless people in their area. Way to go Juniors of GSCCC Troop 723!

If you or someone you know suffer from a domestic abuse situation, please contact the Albemarle Hopeline 24-hour Crisis Line: 252-338-3011 or visit their website (https://www.albemarlehopeline.org/) to Webchat or find more information.

Monday, July 26, 2021

Silver Award Spotlight: Show Your Care of SHARE - Rescue Education Day

Girl Scout Cadette Samantha earned her Silver Award by volunteering hundreds of hours working at Southern Hope Animal Rescue and has earned her Silver Award for her project titled, Show Your Care of SHARE - Rescue Education Day. She has helped with the rehabilitation and adoption of numerous animals with recovery needs so it was important to Samantha to educate others about the importance of adoption as another option to buying pets. 

 She held an event for the Girl Scouts in her area at a farm shelter and taught them about the animals housed there, the history of how the animals got there and how to help prevent situations where animals would be abandoned or abused. She explained how to be a responsible animal owner through fun activities that included engagement with the animals. She plans to hold this event annually to keep awareness of area animal rescue efforts going in her community.

 

Congratulations, Samantha!


Samantha and other Girl Scouts along with their donations to the left

Samantha at a recent state competition.
She has been doing well balancing riding, Girl Scouts and school work! 



Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Gold Award Spotlight: Curtie Goes to the Congo

Girl Scout Ambassador Roxanne earned her Gold Award by completing her project titled, “Curtie Goes to the Congo, Pt II.” Roxanne worked with Cathy Snyders of Operation Smile to write and illustrate a book and lesson plans geared towards elementary aged children to help them understand cleft palates, a condition that affects babies born around the world. Roxanne’s book teaches about understanding, empathy and Operation Smiles’ mission to make a difference, all published in five different languages.

 Operation Smiles, headquartered in Virginia Beach, Virginia, works around the globe to provide dental care and cleft repairs to underserved regions. Operation Smiles volunteers often provide dental care to families in the Dominican Republic of the Congo, which inspired Roxanne and Snyders to make it the focus of their book. In the book, Curtie the frog shares his experience with a cleft lip and palate and how where you come from in the world can often affect the care you receive.

 

Roxanne’s book was published and is available for purchase at the Operations Smiles shop and was donated to six area elementary schools. Because the book is available in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Hindi and French, volunteers will be able to take copies around the world to all the areas they serve.

 

Roxanne, thank you for making the world a better place!




Monday, July 19, 2021

Celebration of GS Daisy Lorelei's Life

In celebration of Girl Scout Daisy Lorelei’s life who lost her battle to a life threatening disease on July 7, a blood drive will be held in her honor. The family is encouraging those interested to join them in donating blood on Wednesday, July 21 at the Hampton Roads REALTORS Association from 10AM-3PM.  If interested, please sign up in advance at redcrossblood.org.

(click on DONATE BLOOD, click on FIND A BLOOD DRIVE in the drop down, and then use the code LORELEI)

During the last cookie season, with the help of her mom, Susan, and many Girl Scout alum and volunteers, Lorelei joined Girl Scouts as a DaisyAlthough Lorelei faced many challenges living with a severe disease, she and her mom enjoyed taking part in the Girl Scout Cookie Program. It brought back wonderful Girl Scout memories to Susan and made new ones for them to share together. Through community support, Lorelei sold more than 700 boxes of cookies and donated 300 of them to the Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters where she had spent much time during her treatments.  

 

Due to complications from her disease, it was not possible for Lorelei to go to Girl Scout camp or any cookie celebration where there would be large groups of people. So, with the help of her family, GSCCC planned a special day at Camp Skimino for Lorelei, “Camp Doodle”. “Doodle” is Lorelei’s special family nickname. It was a magical day for everyone. A few of our staff dressed as woodland fairies to make the magic come alive, and we were able to give Lorelei an experience on the low-ropes course, fishing at the pond, and songs around the campfire under the new pavilion. 


Lorelei and her aunt, Leslie, at Camp Skimino



You can read more in an article here published in the Tidewater Family Plus magazine last spring.  https://bit.ly/2TnSNQ8

 

In Lorelei's obituary, Susan wrote that "Lorelei accomplished more in her short five years than most could do in 100 years. Despite being nonverbal due to her rare form of Mitochondrial Disease, Lorelei shared her pure, yet often sassy, soul with everyone. She was an expert cuddler, lover of Disney movies, happy camper, hammock aficionado, sucker for fart noises, Daisy Girl Scout and guacamole lick-tester. Her heart was happiest when she was kicking, splashing, playing or floating in water."  

 

Lorelei's life will be celebrated on Tuesday, July 20, at 4PM at the Lesner Inn in Virginia Beach, VA. Dress code is bright colors, tie dye optional. In lieu of flowers, her family requests that donations be made to the following organizations in her honor.

 

Lorelei and Benji's Fund for a Mito Cure

CHKD

Edmarc 

SMILE 


Lorelei and Susan

Leslie, Susan, and Lorelei


 

Monday, July 12, 2021

Gold Award Spotlight: Supporting Safety Around Water

Did you know, according to the World Health Organization, drowning is the third leading cause of accidental injury around the world? In fact, some school districts in the United States require swimming lessons and water safety education as part of their public school curriculum from an early age.

Girl Scout Ambassador Lilian recently earned the Gold Award by completing her project titled, “Supporting Safety Around Water.” Lilian has always been an advocate of water safety since a young age and wanted to share what she has learned over the years with children in her community.


“Knowing how to swim was a first grade requirement where I am from in Maryland,” Lilian said. “I was shocked to find people in Virginia Beach who don’t know how to swim or don’t know the proper safety procedures. This lack of knowledge could be life threatening.”


Lilian’s local YMCA, the Indian River Branch, has an existing water safety and swimming course for families in the community, and Lilian felt she could use her artistic skills and knowledge about swimming to highlight the program and increase attendance. She created colorful posters and age appropriate activity booklets to help kids get excited about swimming. Lilian also designed a quiz for instructors to use before and after the course to benchmark knowledge gained.


Her project was successful and she volunteered time to share information from her booklets with children at the YMCA. She was advised by the aquatics coordinator at the Indian River YMCA branch, Armando Alvarez, who said the facility and staff will continue to use her activities and quizzes in future swimming lessons. 


Lilian is excited to turn sixteen years old soon so she can officially fulfill the requirements needed to become a lifeguard!


Congratulations, Lilian! 





Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Alum Spotlight: Future Famous Former Sarah Noffsinger

Former Girl Scout and 2020-2021 Future Famous Former Honoree Sarah Noffsinger is the director of development for the Transgender Assistance Program of VA, or TAP VA, and resource coordinator with VA COPES, who aims to end transgender homelessness in the state. Her latest venture is an online store that provides gender affirming clothing to transgender people, packaged and shipped to them at no cost.

Sarah wanted to provide a comfortable online shopping experience to customers that felt good to the user.


“I didn’t want it to feel like a charity thing,” Sarah said. “I wanted them to feel empowered to pick out the clothing that they wanted and have a normal online shopping experience.”


So far the closet has helped hundreds of customers feel more comfortable in their own skin.


Though June is Pride Month, Sarah said that people must educate themselves year round about LGBTQ issues as “once a year is not enough to fully understand the scope of the community and the issues we face.”


At this time TAP VA’s closet is not accepting donations due to the genour outpour of donations received, however those interested in learning more can contact Transactivistva@gmail.com for program details.


Photo by Jonathon Gruenke for Inside Business


Sarah filling Care Packages. Photo by WTKR


Click here for more information about the upcoming Famous Formers Luncheon.


Sunday, June 27, 2021

Bronze Award Spotlight: Helping the Puppies

 Girl Scout Junior Peyton of Troop 256 recently earned her Bronze award in her project she titled, “Helping the Puppies,” by helping families with pets in need of vet care. Peyton learned about the high costs associated with taking family pets to the vet and learned a simple but impactful way she could make a difference!

She collected empty medicine bottles from the community with plans to donate them to the Virginia Beach SPCA and the Portsmouth Humane Society for family pets who visit to receive care. 


Peyton said, “The empty bottles help families who need to purchase medicine for their animals. The family would only need to pay for the cost of the medication instead of medication and medicine bottles.” 


Peyton made flyers to hand out to her neighborhood and at her mom and dad’s offices to promote her plans and to allow the community time to plan their donations. Peyton set out collection bins on her front porch and at her parent's offices and allowed donations from the community to come in. After the collection was complete, Peyton thoroughly cleaned all the medicine bottles and donated them to the two locations.


Congratulations, Peyton! Thank you for making the world a better place.