Girl Scouts are Un-BEE-lievable!

May 16, 2016

Daisy _ Take Action Tuesday

By Tara Rappleye, Program Director

Across the United States the Honeybee population is declining. According to CNN, in the 1940’s there were around 5 million hives in the United States, we now only have around 2.5 million. Researchers are unsure of the exact reason for the decline in Honeybees. There has been increased awareness of this issue as more people realize the importance of Honeybees as they are the foundation to our crop supply. Without these creatures to pollinate specific crops, we may start to see a loss of certain foods we love.

Daisy Tree Cheer For AnimalInspired by the decreasing Honeybee population 20 Daisies, 2 Juniors, 1 Ambassador, and 1 GS-NCCP Staff Member planted a Honeybee-friendly garden at the Raleigh Service Center as part of the Take Action Tuesday: 3 Cheers to Animals program on April 26th.

The Girl Scouts met at the Raleigh Service Center to learn more about how to care for animals and themselves. During the program, the Daisies went from station to station answering questions on how to care for animals such as fish, cats, and puppies and doing physical challenges to stay fit. The activity the girls enjoyed most was lifting weights. All the Daisies proved their strength as they did dumbbell curls and military press with water bottles.

The program ended with the Take Action Project lead by Olivia Loyack, Girl Scout Ambassador. Olivia is currently working on her Girl Scout Gold Award Project. Her project is centered on the decline of Honey Bee hives, spreading awareness of this issue, and creating Honeybee-friendly gardens in the community. The program went from just Council Sponsored to girl-led as Olivia shared her knowledge of Honeybees and gardening with the younger girls.

Olivia led the Daises in the planting of the Zinnias in front of the Raleigh Service Center entrance. She showed them how to properly hold and transplant the flowers into the soil. The Junior Girl Scouts in attendance took on the task of planting the larger Salvia plants in pots that are also at the entrance of the Service Center. The Daisies LOVED getting their hands dirty and planting the flowers. The Girl Scouts also created “bee baths” out of terracotta trays filled with stones and water.

After hands were washed and flowers were watered, it was time to end the day with the Friendship Circle and share what everyone learned. Many of the Daisies were inspired by this girl-led Take Action project to plant their own Honeybee-friendly garden at home.

3 Easy Ways Your Troop Can Help Save the Honeybees

1. Plant a Honeybee Friendly Garden

Grow a small garden with a few good pollinator flowers. Here are a few pollinator flowers: Zinnias, Salvia, Lavender, mint, and Daisies. Honeybees are most attracted blue and purple hued flowers.

2. Add a Honeybee bath to your garden or yard

Honeybees need water, just like people do. Take the tray of a flower pot and add a pile of small stones or a few big rocks. Then fill with water. Having the stones or rocks will help prevent the Honeybees from drowning when they land in the bath because they are crash-landers.

3. Support local bee-keepers

Buy local honey instead of honey from the store. Head to the Farmer’s Market to pick up other local produce. Supporting local farmers is supporting local Honeybees!

You can easily do a Take Action project around saving local Honeybees in your community through these three simple projects. Learning and sharing knowledge about flowers, gardens, animals, and bugs, can be tied to many GSUSA curriculum including the Naturalist Badges, Animal Badges, Daisy Flower Garden Journey, and Daisy 3 Cheers Journey.

Want to learn more about the decline of Honeybees- watch this video for more information and details!


“I Camp too!”

May 9, 2016

pg 13 smores

By Margaret Hartzell, Individual Giving Director

“You camp?! You don’t look like you camp.” said a former coworker to me once when I mentioned an upcoming camping adventure.

At first it surprised me. Does someone who camps look a certain way? Was it because I was a woman? Couldn’t I wear dresses and love the outdoors?

But then it made me proud! I DO camp!

Because, the truth was, I never went to summer camp. I didn’t start camping until my late 20’s and early 30’s. When I finally discovered it though, camping became our preferred method of vacationing. We camped with our three dogs all over North Carolina, spending nights in places like Cape Hatteras National Seashore and Ocracoke. The big adventure was a road trip up the California coast camping along the way—Joshua Tree National Park, Big Sur, Bodega Bay, and Humboldt Redwoods State Park. The first time I ever saw the Milky Way was as I laid in my tent. Even as an adult I’m proud of the dirt line left by my sandals after days of camping. Or the scrapes and bruises that come with a difficult hike.

My first trip to Girl Scout Camp was Camp Mary Atkinson for an all-staff meeting last month. Even without the girls singing camp songs in the dining hall or counselors herding girls for the next activity, I could feel the magic of it all. It’s a magic I want all girls to experience.

It shouldn’t be a surprise that any of these young girls love the outdoors. I want them to proudly say “I camp too!”

Unfortunately for many girls in under-resourced communities across North Carolina Girl Scout camp isn’t a reality. The Girl Scouts – North Carolina Coastal Pines Campership Fund provides financial assistance so that any girl can have the life-changing outdoor experience that Girl Scouting provides. For every Girl Scout – our girls pay less than half of the cost we incur to bring them a week of camp adventures.

This month we are raising money for Camperships so we can deliver the gift of the great outdoors to every girl. With your help, more girls will say “I CAMP TOO!” because of their time spent at Graham, Hardee, or Mary Atkinson this summer.

Donate here.

P.S. Thanks to our community partners, Carolinas IT and Great Outdoor Provision Co., your gift to the Campership Fund will be matched, allowing more girls to find adventure and friendship at Girl Scout Camp this summer.

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