How often should our troop meet?
Frequency of troop meetings is up to the leader(s). Some troops meet weekly, bi-weekly or once a month. Meetings can be held after school, in the evenings, or even on the weekends. Troop meetings usually run about an hour for K-1st grade and an hour and a half for 2-8th grade girls. Decide what works best for you and your troop.
Where can our troop meet?
There are many community spaces to use for troop meetings. Some are free and some have minimal costs. Examples: a local community center, library, churches, registered volunteer’s home, school cafeteria, classrooms, city recreation centers, business meeting rooms and even coffee shops. You can work directly with any potential meeting location to book the space. If the location requires you to sign any contract, contact the SU Event Coordinator who can help you get approval from the River Valleys Council. This is to ensure that your troop and the meeting location are covered under Girl Scout insurance.
How much does Girl Scouts cost?
The annual registration fee for girls & adults is $15 for each program year (10/1-9/30). This registration also includes coverage under our umbrella insurance during Girl Scout related activities. A new troop may ask for a one-time “troop dues” to cover meeting supplies, badges, etc. If you are a leader taking over an existing troop, there may be cookie funds and an existing bank account. Troops have the opportunity in October & January to earn funds for the troop. (Fall Product Sales, Winter Cookie Sales) Troop leaders open a troop bank account and manage the monies collected through that account and submit an annual finance report. That is also where any money earned is deposited and spent.
What do Girl Scouts do?
In Girl Scouts, we do more than just sell cookies and go to camp. We are the only Leadership Program for girls in the world. Did you know that over 70% of professional women were Girl Scouts? Learn more about our Program Essentials on our website.
- Check it out here: http://www.girlscoutsrv.org/start-here/what-do-girl-scouts-do/
What level is my troop?
Girl Scout levels are determined by the current school grade of the girl. Girls can start as early as Kindergarten or as late as senior in high school. Girls move to each level regardless of past involvement.
- Check out all the levels here: http://www.girlscoutsrv.org/start-here/grades-levels/
How can I structure my troop to get more parents/adults involved?
Many troops these days create a ‘co-op’ structure to help spread out the responsibilities of leadership. While you must still have a true ‘main leader’ as the formal contact for the troop, you can divvy out many of the troop responsibilities in many different ways. Get parents/families involved right away and set a feasible expectation of support. Troops need leaders, co-leaders, event planners, drivers, snack coordinators, treasurers, Cookie Managers, Fall Product coordinators and everything in-between! Below is a link to a PDF on the River Valleys website that gives examples of a Co-Op structure.
Where can I find resources to help plan badges, meetings, etc?
Girl Scouts offers many activity plans to make it easy to plan and facilitate meetings. The website and the Girls Guide to Girl Scouting binders both give examples of meeting plans that include a general outline of the opening, middle, and closing of every meeting. Each meeting plan is designed so that the girls earn a petal (Daisy level) or a badge (all other levels) during a meeting. The older the grade level, the longer it may take to earn a badge. REMEMBER: Meeting plans are meant as a guide and can be modified by the troop leader and require few materials.
- Check out the Programming Guides here: http://www.girlscoutsrv.org/get-involved/volunteers/troop-leaders/planning-guides/
I don’t want to be a troop leader. Are there other ways to volunteer?
YES! Troops and service units need all sorts of help.
Troop Volunteer Roles
- Sign up to lead just one meeting
- Be the co-leader and help share the responsibilities of planning the troop
- Be the Troop Cookie Manager and handle the cookie program when the time comes
- Be the Fall Product Manager and handle the activity for the troop
- Secure meeting space(s)
- Attend meetings to help out with activities, setup, etc.
- Create and idea for an outing or activity and offer to lead that activity
- Manage the paperwork and communications involved with the troop
- Offer to attend the monthly leader meetings within the Service Unit
- Coordinate field trips & events
- Manage the troop finances (treasurer)
- Create and update a troop website
- Be the official Troop Photographer and Memory Keeper
- Lead the charge to create a Troop Flag
Service Unit Roles
- Service Unit Manager
- Service Unit Co-Manager
- Manager Assistant
- Website Management
- Resource Coordinator
- Leader/Volunteer Trainer (Fast Start, Beyond the Troop)
- Troop Mentor (one needed for every level)
- Cookie Manager
- Fall Product Manager
- Encampment Director/Day Camp
- Event Coordinator(s)
- Faith/Religious Award Coordinator
Just ask your troop leader or service unit team what volunteer needs exist. We can find the right fit for you!
- Check out more here: http://www.girlscoutsrv.org/get-involved/volunteers/volunteer-positions/
Content for this page was provided by a River Valleys membership specialist