Archive for the ‘Programs’ Category


Remembering Girl Scout Barbara Stiles

July 7, 2016

barbara stiles

By: Paige Burnett, Girl Scout volunteer

When asked to name someone who embodies the Girl Scout Promise and Law and overall ideals of our Movement, one name quickly came to mind. Barbara Stiles. Barbara, who passed away in June, was a lifelong Girl Scout. She was everything a Girl Scout should be – honest and fair, friendly and helpful, considering and caring, and so much more. It’s an honor to write about her Girl Scouts career and how she impacted our local Girl Scouts and council.

Barbara Stiles began her life career with Girl Scouts as a staff member with Girl Scouts of the USA staff and then later joined the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), where she worked in Japan to bring together American occupying forces and Japanese Girl Scout troops. She then spent 30 years serving all over the world as a Girl Scout. It was an amazing adventure and one she always spoke of fondly.

I was fortunate enough to first meet Barbara in the mid-90’s. I was planning a World Thinking Day meeting for my then Girl Scout Junior Troop #208 when another volunteer, Barbara Schliebe, suggest I call Barbara and see if she would be interested in participating. Barbara had been on the International Committee and was instrumental in the planning and building of Our Cabaña in Mexico, a program that allows members to explore Mexico and its cultures and traditions.

Barbara graciously agreed to come to our meeting, and arrived with a bag full of international “swaps” acquired over a long career as a professional Girl Scout. She held the Girl Scout Juniors’ rapt attention talking about her world adventures in Girl Scouting and finished by asking the girls questions about WAGGGS and Girl Scouts — any girl that tried to answer was rewarded with a pin or a patch or a swap. The adults in the room were hard pressed not to waggle their own hands in hopes of a chance to be similarly rewarded. It was such a fun experience and a special memory we all carry with us.

I have had the privilege of maintaining a friendship with both Barbara and her twin sister over the last twenty years. The twins have shared a house on Gimghoul Rd in Chapel Hill for nearly 40 years. Their spring garden, identified by “The Garden is Open” sign in their front yard, has become well known near and far over the last 25 years – Girl Scout troops were especially welcome. They were always eager to learn of what the girls were doing and where they were traveling with Girl Scouts. Bernice and Barbara loved a Trefoil cookie, and more recently, Lemonades!

It is hard to be sad at the finish of such a long life, well lived. Barbara will forever be remembered as a generous and gracious Girl Scout who always made time for others. I am proud to have been her Girl Scout sister and her friend.

I am eager to celebrate Barbara Stiles and reminisce once again on this incredible Girl Scout at a public memorial this fall. In the meantime, as her family requested in her memorial, I will be making a donation in her honor to the World Foundation for Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, Inc., in the Interest of Our Cabana and Kusafiri. I hope you will join me.


Calling All Captains!

July 5, 2016


By Brooke Banson and Allison Winans, Recruitment Team

Do you love Girl Scouts? Want to share your amazing experiences as a parent or Girl Scout volunteer with others? Then you (or other interested parents!) should join our Girl Scout School Captain team! School Captains are a short-term volunteer role that assists with our fall recruitment efforts.

Interested? Awesome! Here’s what you need to know!

Last fall, we announced a new volunteer role perfect for potential volunteers, families, and parent’s on-the-go…the Girl Scout School Captain! As a School Captain, you’ll be the bridge between Girl Scouts and a specific elementary school (or group of schools!) to help drive awareness about Girl Scouts among girls and families in the community. You’ll be able to work independently, but make a huge impact! A commitment of two hours per month during the back-to-school season is all the time needed to be successful in this role. As a part of a team of captains, you will stay informed with three to four online webinars a year and a monthly email newsletter packed with suggested activities, talking points and ways to showcase the girls’ experiences and leadership skills.  In this key role you will help share and highlight important milestones that are at the core of the Girl Scout program.

Ready for the nitty gritty?  Here are three ways a School Captain can help with back to school recruitment efforts this summer and fall:

1 – Show Up! Attend an open house for an elementary school near you as a Girl Scout representative.  Work with members of the Girl Scout staff to identify, schedule, and attend a school open house to engage parents and girls in all things Girl Scouts. If you supply the energy, excitement, and personal stories, we will supply the materials, Girl Scout swag, and other items needed to make our presence stand out!

2 – Pass it Out! Assist staff and other volunteers with the distribution of Girl Scout recruitment flyers to local schools. Throughout the year most schools will allow Girl Scout recruitment flyers to be distributed to students.  The more schools we can deliver our materials to, the stronger our presence and message will be in the community. And that leads to more girls engaged in our program, reaping the benefits of leadership development, and most importantly – having a ton of fun!

3 – Speak Up! Attend a PTA meeting at your local elementary school to share your stories and experiences with the Girl Scout program. The personal connection you have with the Girl Scout mission helps showcase the amazing things our girls (and volunteers, like you!) are doing in the community and the impact they can have on the school community. Working with the PTA to have a space on their agenda will allow the opportunity to showcase our program! Worried about what you will say? No problem! Our staff will be with you every step of the way and provide talking points, presentations, recruitment materials, and so much more!

So, what’s next? Sign me up!

Contact me directly for details on how to get started!  With a strong network of captains, this will be the best summer ever!

Brooke Banson


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