By Selah Bourgeois
Youth Member, Christ Church United Methodist, Denver, Colorado
Girl Scouts has been a large part of my life for the past 11 years, since I was in kindergarten.
At first it was a space to spend time with my friends and learn about the community around me. As I grew older, it turned into a learning experience that pushed me outside of my comfort zone and encouraged me to pursue what I was passionate about.
I toured hospitals and homeless shelters, learned about blindness and horseback riding, and met many new people. I am currently a junior in high school, and the Girl Scout experience has continued to mature and present new opportunities for me.
This past June, I took part in a Counselor in Training (CIT) program at a Girl Scout camp I attended as a camper for many years. As a camper, I gained many skills, such as how to build a fire, use echolocation, and successfully navigate rapids if you fall out of your raft. As a CIT, I had many of the same job requirements as paid staff. I was expected to create and run programs for younger girls, entertain campers while waiting for the next activity, and act in a professional manner while maintaining the magical spirit of camp. The valuable life skills I took away from my time as a CIT include leadership, childcare, and responsibility, as well as how to apply and interview for a job.
Though the training program only lasted two weeks, I learned skills that will impact me for the rest of my life. I would not have had the opportunity to be a part of this experience and learn these skills if I had not been involved in Girl Scouts.
The United Methodist Church designates the second Sunday in February as Scouting Sunday (formerly Boy Scout Sunday), with an alternate date on the second Sunday in March (formerly Girl Scouting Sunday). Most churches that sponsor or host both Boy and Girl scouts will choose one day to celebrate the ministry and the adults and youth involved. Many prefer the earlier date because it does not (usually) conflict with Lent. The celebration can occur at any time during the year.