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Meet the Rangers: David Auman, Camp Mu-Sha-Ni

June 1, 2015

MSN David's Bridge

By Meridith Orr, Program Executive

The last time you visited one of our Council camps you may have hiked the trails, learned to identify animal tracks, shot a bow and arrow, or cooked dinner over a fire ring. You may not realize it, but there is someone who makes all those adventures possible for Girl Scouts, someone who works behind the scenes to ensure our campers have everything they need.

At Camp Mu-Sha-Ni, that person is David Auman. People know Ranger David for his nature hikes and comprehensive lessons in identifying all the flora and fauna on the 850-acre property. He is also a proud Girl Scout Dad whose two daughters not only grew up in the program but got married at camp! Recently, Ranger David took a break from his winter activities to talk to us about his job.

Q: How did you get started being a camp ranger?

A: I did some part-time work for Girl Scouts before starting full-time. I was a farmer before I became a ranger, and I let rangers use my equipment, so I got to know them. When I heard one of them was going to retire, I applied for the position.

 

Q: How long have you worked with Girl Scouts/and our council?

A: I started 27 years ago. The first summer I was here part-time. I built the stage before the one we have now, the fire ring at Chalfant before the current fire ring (same footprint), and the bridge close to Chalfant. They’ve lasted quite a while, but there have been a lot of changes.

 

Q: What’s a fun fact about the camp you manage?

A: Camp Mu-Sha-Ni has the most acreage of any Girl Scout camp in North Carolina with 850. You could put all of our other camps on top of this one and still not cover it all.

 

Q: What do you love best about being a camp ranger?

A: Too many things to mention! I like seeing the girls have fun, seeing them worn out at the end of the day and not mind being dirty! I like the outdoor work.

 

Q: What’s the ONE thing you do around camp that no one would expect that you do?

A: This makes me grin. I was actually cleaning the toilets one day at camp and got a call that a foundation was coming to visit – so I had to stop cleaning the toilets, get changed and be ready to meet the foundation all in the same day! We got the funding, too!

 

Q: If you could teach someone something about your job, what would it be?

A: To be a good steward of the land. Hopefully the people skills would come naturally, but the stewardship piece might take a little longer to come along.

 

Q: What do you do in the winter?

A: I like to do the building projects and the forestry work – commercial thinning, planting, duck boxes, the outdoor stuff.

 

Q: What do you like best about Girl Scouts?

A: I like the outdoors part! I like the camp, the property. The fact that Girl Scouts teaches to leave things better than you found them. I went to school in Rockingham and saw the race track after Jamboree and after a race.  After a race, there would be just a sea of garbage left. When the Girl Scouts did Jamboree, you could not tell that over 2,000 people had been camping there. That was always impressive to me.

Not long after I started working with the council, a leader had me help build bluebird boxes. All these girls were pounding and nailing these bird boxes together. Later in the paper, I saw a girl presenting a bluebird box to a library.   There is a girl who came back with her child and she has her own bluebird box kit. Some Girl Scouts have come back to get married here! Lots of great memories.

 

Q: Do you have a favorite Girl Scout camping tip/story?

A: My girls were in Girl Scouts and I did the camping part. My wife did the troop part. I was proud to be there to observe Yellow Feather!

 

Q: What’s your earliest memory of camping as a kid?

A: I was in the Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts and did family camping and Boy Scout camporees. We camped on private property and went to get water from a stream, saw an arrowhead on the ground and took it to the Scoutmaster. Before long we all picked up arrowheads that day. That memory jumps out.

Girl Scouts visiting Camp Mu-Sha-Ni have a great friend in Ranger David. On your next visit, be sure to thank him for the stage he recently upgraded, the wonderful fire circle and the time he takes to teach us all about nature. Got a question for our rangers? Leave one in the comments!

 

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“…to serve God”: Religious Recognitions in Girl Scouting

May 26, 2015

Girl Scouts and Faith

By Meridith Orr, Program Executive

“Still, Daisy listened to the teachings of her church and watched the example of her parents. From the Helpful Hands Club to ailing Spanish-American War soldiers, from her efforts among the villagers in Wellsbourne to helping poor girls in Camberwell, Daisy was no stranger to philanthropy.” – Stacey Cordery, Juliette Gordon Low: the Remarkable Founder of the Girl Scouts

Our Founder, Juliette Gordon Low, was a woman of deep faith in her Episcopalian church. She not only was baptized in Christ Church in Savannah, Georgia, she was married and had her funeral there.   Her tombstone contains a passage from 1 Corinthians 13, “Now abideth faith, hope and love, but the greatest of these is love.”

Today, the Movement she founded is an organization that supports girls from all backgrounds and beliefs. While we refrain from teaching specific religious or spiritual beliefs or practices, we believe that the motivating force in Girl Scouting is a spiritual one. Girl Scouts encourages both our girl and adult members to explore their values, including developing connections between their own faith traditions and the Girl Scout Law.

The My Promise, My Faith pin is a GSUSA-created award that helps a girl explore connections between the Girl Scout Law and her faith. The steps to earn the award show her how both Girl Scouting and her faith offer similar ideas about how to act. Girls may earn the pin once a year, every year she is in Girl Scouting by choosing a different line of the law. The award may be earned in a troop setting and the requirements are published in each grade level of The Girls’ Guide to Girl Scouting.

Many faith communities offer Religious Recognitions for Girl Scouts at each grade level and corresponding recognitions for adults. It’s important to remember that the My Promise, My Faith pin does not replace Religious Recognitions. Girls are encouraged to earn both awards, and both are worn on the front of the uniform.

Religious recognition awards are created by specific faith communities, and offer lessons based on their beliefs and tenets. The requirements, as well as the awards themselves, are obtained from national faith organizations or committees. More information about religious recognition programs can be found here . In 2014, Girl Scouts – North Carolina Coastal Pines was ranked 7th across all Girl Scout councils for usage of the P.R.A.Y. recognitions program.

Girl Scouts – North Carolina Coastal Pines offers a Religious Recognitions Workshop to give girls the opportunity to grow stronger in their faith and honor their promise “to serve God.” Look for information on this year’s workshop when our program event guides are published this fall.

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