Our girls need us, now more than ever. Girls younger than ever are facing unprecedented challenges navigating mental, social and emotional wellness and it is affecting how they navigate their daily lives.
Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana recognizes the effects lifestyle changes presented from a pandemic can have on our members. Girls have not been interacting with friends and family in a manner that they are used to. Their social interactions at school or extra-curricular activities had been paused or severely adjusted. Some girls encountered challenges with being in quarantine for extended amounts of time. Other girls had to process and deal with the aftermath of societal responses to racial injustices.
Advocating for the health and safety of girls in a physical sense is what we have always done. Extending that care and concern to the emotional and social health and wellness of our members is critical. As we enter a new membership year, Girl Scouts is committed to building an ecosystem of wellness, health, and social-emotional wellbeing around girls.
How Girl Scouts Plan to Support the Ecosystem
Girl Scouts is dedicating its resources to building resiliency in girls and creating a safe space for them to return to in the following ways:
- In partnership with the Center for Childhood Resilience at the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital, we plan to revolutionize our approach to providing experiences and opportunities for girls to thrive and lead regardless of circumstance, race, or zip code.
- GCNWI has provided training for staff and volunteers designed to help them anticipate an increase in unpredictable and unusual behaviors that indicate a girl may be experiencing a mental, social, or emotional struggle.
- In our continued commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, Girl Scouts vows to create a more equitable leadership landscape for girls, women, families, and communities.
Resources for Volunteers
Our curriculum and training modules help volunteers and families recognize trauma and put into practice ways to resolve conflict and build empathy, mindfulness, and coping skills. Log in to your Girl Scout account, select gsLearn from the menu on the left, and click on “content library” to take the available trainings:
- Trauma-Informed Practices – Support all girls (and yourself) with best practices in social-emotional learning, developed with Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago’s Center for Childhood Resilience.
- Basics of Inclusion– Inclusion is at the core of who we are—sisters to every Girl Scout!
- Grade Level Training for Bridging Leaders – Empower yourself with the confidence to lead girls as they bridge into their next program level.
“Girl Scouts is no longer a nice thing to have; it is a necessity,” says Girl Scout GCNWI CEO Nancy Wright.
It is time to do more than worry about girls and their well-being. It is time to act. If you haven’t already, renew your membership for FY22 and get ready for a fun, yet safe return to Girl Scouting!