Monday, October 10, 2011

Mags&Munchies! By Guest Blogger Fran McAllister

Fran McAllister, Team Manager Program Promotion
It’s hard to believe that fall is here already.  If you’re like me, a busy working mom, you’re already thinking of your holiday shopping.  To make my life easier, every year I take advantage of the Girl Scout Mags&Munchies product sales.  I purchase magazines, nuts and candies for my family, friends, hair stylist, children’s teachers, and our bus driver.  Not only are they great gifts, but they’re reasonably priced.  I can give something to everyone without breaking the bank.

My family looks forward to receiving all of their favorites and with 15 different products to choose from, there’s something for everyone. This year they even have a gluten-free product, Blueberry Pomegranate nut crunch.

I always give the teachers a tin, but this year there is an old fashioned schoolhouse tin with delicious chocolate covered pretzels that is perfect for a teacher and our bus driver too.

I have a neighbor who was a Girl Scout and I know that she’s going to love the 100th Anniversary Girl Scout suitcase tin. It celebrates Girl Scouting from 1912 to the present. Plus, inside is yummy toffee popcorn with cashews and cranberries.

As a matter of fact, I always buy a few extra tins just in case someone drops by unexpectedly with a gift or I need something to bring with me to a party.  I’ve even used it as a grab bag gift for my kids.

I also like giving magazine subscriptions as gifts.  It encourages my children to read and it’s a gift that they receive all throughout the year.  There are over 600 different types of magazines, so it’s easy to find something for everyone.  My niece just had a baby, so I’ll send her Parenting, and this year there’s a special deal and for just a few dollars more she’ll also get Woman’s Day.

The best part is, not only do Mags&Munchies items make great gifts for the holiday season, but, they supporting my daughter’s Troop and our Council plus I save time and money that is truly a win-win for me!

I also like to spread some goodwill by contributing to Operation Stop Hunger.  For every $5 donation, the Girl Scouts will send a can of nuts or candy to Island Harvest. And this year I can give a $5 donation to Project Thank You to purchase a magazine voucher that goes toward sending a free subscription to the Disabled American Veterans.

I’m already putting together my order since the sale ends on November 1st. 
If you’re interested in ordering products or want more information about the Mags& Munchies Program, please contact Sonia Oxford at Girl Scouts of Nassau County at oxfords@gsnc.org.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Keys to Leadership By Guest Blogger Eliza Zipper

Eliza Zipper, Advocacy and Critical Issues Coordinator
Girl Scouts of Nassau County is committed to building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place.  Our “Keys to Leadership”: Discover, Connect, Take Action, encourage girls to learn about important issues and raise awareness about them. 

The Girl Scout Leadership Experience finds its foundation in a series of   Leadership  Journeys, that focus on 15 outcome measures; 5 of which are designed to help girls identify community needs, promote cooperation and team-building, as well as educate and inspire others to act.  Girls who participate in our Journey program develop the tools and tactics to make meaningful and sustainable change in their communities.

The skills the girls develop in our Journey program prepare them for Girl Scout’s highest award, the Gold Award.  Girls spend up to 80 hours on their project researching, developing and implementing a plan of action, and inspiring others to take action.  Recent Gold Award projects have raised awareness about many important social issues including, environmental conservation, bullying, anti-Semitism, as well as safe sex and domestic violence. Gold Award recipients learn to identify their passion and to create positive change by pursuing this passion.

Girls in our Pathway programs also develop strong advocacy and leadership skills.  The Icebreakers, one of our FIRST Lego League (FLL) Robotic Teams, demonstrated this skill when they discovered a hazardous traffic pattern in their community.  They researched ways to improve the pattern, came up with a recommendation to resolve the safety issues, and refused to stop until the situation was fixed.  They took their plan to the State Capitol in Albany and won support from state legislators.  Through programs like our FLL Teams, girls gain the confidence to stand up for what they believe in.

Girl Scouts of Nassau County continues to provide increasing advocacy opportunities for girls.  In our new program, Girl Speak, girls in grades 6-12 will discuss important issues that impact themselves and their peers as well as develop a plan of action to educate younger girls, parents, educators, and community members about these issues.  Through our new collaboration with the Regina Residence, we will help pregnant teens and teen mothers living at the residence learn how to identify issues that impact their lives, speak up for their needs, and take action against these issues in their community.  In both of these new programs, girls will build their confidence and develop a better sense of self and their communities by advocating for the needs of themselves and others.

Girl Scouts of Nassau County helps girls develop the tools and tactics with which to become their own advocates.  Through innovative programs, such as our Journeys, Gold Awards, and community outreach initiatives, girls engage in advocacy experiences that help them gain a better sense of themselves and the needs of their communities.

For more information about Girl Scouting or the programs mentioned contact Eliza Zipper, Advocacy and Critical Issues Coordinator at 516 741-2550 ext 254 or email mail her at zippere@gsnc.org.