In the face of natural disaster, Girl Scouts know what to do—whether it’s preparing for safety or helping others in the aftermath. That is exactly what many Girl Scouts did when Hurricane Florence made its way across our council’s 41 counties in mid-September. As our Girl Scouts used their preparedness skills to gear up for the storm, Girl Scouts from across the nation—and even some Girl Guides from across the world—responded with countless offers to lend a helping hand following the storm. It is times like this that showcase how Girl Scouts helps girls everywhere come together to help those in need.
Girl Scouts provides girls with the resources and experiences they need to take the lead and be prepared for whatever life brings their way—and a program that was particularly useful to girls in the days leading up to Florence was the Hurricane Awareness Patch Program. This patch was designed to help girls prepare in the event of a hurricane or tropical storm and is available to Girl Scout Brownies-Ambassadors. For the patch, Girl Scouts must research information about the natural disaster, such as how hurricanes form and what determines the different categories of hurricanes, and complete activities like creating a family evacuation plan and hurricane preparedness kits.
Girl Scout Troop #4254
Girl Scout Troop #4254 completed the Hurricane Awareness Patch Program last year after Hurricane Matthew. They wanted to feel safe and more confident the next time a tropical storm or hurricane occurred. The troop discussed resources that they found useful during the storm, as well as resources that they wished that they had. Together, they created a prep list for a hurricane kit to help them gear up for future storms. For Hurricane Florence, the girls had more of an idea of what to expect and how to stay safe.
One of the most important parts of being a Girl Scout is Taking Action and helping others in their time of need. After Hurricane Florence, many were left without food, shelter, clothing, and more. Many of our troops stepped up to assist others in the aftermath of the storm.
Girl Scout Troop #702
After learning that the United Cajun Navy was helping with water rescues of people and animals around Wilmington after the hurricane, Girl Scout Juniors from Troop #702 set up a table outside a local grocery store to collect donations for the organization. The girls collected three carloads of needed items as well as over $250 in monetary donations to help the United Cajun Navy continue with their rescue missions.
Mycala B., Girl Scout Troop #581
Mycala, a Girl Scout Senior and member of the Girl Scout Media Girlz team, spent over two weeks volunteering with the Red Cross Disaster Relief Team at a local church. She helped by washing dishes and handing out food during meal time. “I think that it is very important to volunteer during hard times because it helps people that have been deeply affected by the storm and brings a smile to people’s faces to see that there are people out there who want to help them get better. A lot of the people who come and get meals have lost their house and all of their food,” said Mycala.
Girl Scout Troop #4791
When the Girl Scout Brownies and Juniors from Troop #4791 learned that College Park Elementary was displaced and in need of paper and books, the girls took action by holding a book and paper drive for the school. The girls distributed flyers to spread the word and placed drop-off boxes around town. The girls could not be more proud when they collected two carloads of supplies which they delivered to the school’s principal on October 8th.
Take Action like a Girl Scout
In the days since Hurricane Florence, we’ve learned of Girl Scout members, volunteers, and staff experiencing loss or damage of their homes and vehicles, inability to work, and challenges coping with the impact of the storm. We’ve also seen first-hand that when disaster strikes, Girl Scouts are among the first to respond. With messages of support and so many offering to help, we have put into place several different relief programs including:
- Establishing a Disaster Relief Fund for those wishing to make a financial contribution to support our efforts.
- Send a Hug, where Girl Scout troops and girls decorate a trefoil with words of encouragement and support that are sent on to impacted Girl Scouts.
- Juliette’s List, an online “Give or Get” gateway to facilitate troop-to-troop support efforts.
- #GirlScoutsGive community service campaign that encourages Girl Scouts to provide support or assistance in affected areas.
Learn more about all of the efforts listed above by visiting https://gsnccp.org/DisasterRelief
Additionally, on Saturday, October 27th from 9:30 – 1:30 we will host “Jam the Van for Victims of Hurricane Florence”. In conjunction with Make a Difference Day, Girl Scout members and staff are invited to Jam the Van at any of our four service centers: Raleigh, Wilmington, Fayetteville, and Goldsboro.
Feel free to come out with your donations – suggested items below! If you have questions, contact our service center at 1-800-284-4475.
We are so proud of our girls for standing as leaders before the hurricane and helping their friends and families prepare, and for taking action for those in need in the aftermath. Join the Girl Scouts family by visiting nccoastalpines.org.
The Hurricane Awareness and Hurricane Relief patches are available in council shops or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org