In undertaking the Girl Scout promise to help people at all times, a few local troops showed that their mission is to do more than sell a few boxes of cookies.
“Our troop tries to do at least four community service projects a year,” said Kim McGougan, leader of Troop 609, which meets at Trinity Presbyterian Church. “We’ve donated to the humane society and gone to the animal shelter to work. As Girl Scouts we try to donate as much as we can.”
Troop 609, in addition to the Girl Scouts of Laurel Hill Parks and Recreation Troop 1723 and Old Laurel Hill Presbyterian Church Troop 239, donated blankets to Scotland County’s chapter of the American Red Cross this week in an annual gesture of assistance to local disaster victims.
“Years ago, Girl Scouts had this thing called Blanket the Community and they would ask people to donate new or fairly used blankets,” said Kathy McCall, leader of Troop 1723. “The Girl Scouts don’t recognize it like they used to, but our girls were used to doing it so we continued. It’s something we can do in the community to show people that the Girl Scouts care and that we know the importance of what one little blanket can do for someone who’s house is burning.”
The blankets donated by the scouts, over 35 in all, will be distributed to the victims of local disasters, mostly house fires.
“We appreciate all the hard work these girls do in collecting and donating these blankets. It means so much to those we serve knowing these come from the local Girl Scout troops,” said Carol Ann Lentz, director of the American Red Cross of Scotland and Robeson counties.
The Scout troops have donated blankets for five years as part of their mission to serve their communities. Although they used to collect blankets from the community at large, scouts families now purchase blankets as the Red Cross can only accept used ones.
“That’s what we always try to teach our girls: to help those in need, community outreach, being a part of your own community and helping those in need as much as possible,” McGougan said. “Last year we actually did a Girl Scout Day where they invited all the girls in Scotland County to teach them Girl Scout things.
Troop 1723 also engages in community service twice a year by planting flowers and singing Christmas carols at the Edwin Morgan Center. Money from the last Troop 609 cookie sale was forwarded to the Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Center of Scotland County.
“They allocated it to buy birthday cakes for the kids at the women’s shelter,” said McGougan. “We’ve also collected food for a couple of years for Project Inasmuch for a couple of years.”