Guest Blogger: Want to Go Global? What to Know Before You Do

Karen Scheuerer is the Manager of Global Action at the Girl Scouts of the USA

Karen Scheuerer is the Manager of Global Action at the Girl Scouts of the USA

Editors note:

Trips abroad are great way to engage older girls, especially as they earn money during cookie season. If funding seems to be an issue, make it a challenge, not an obstacle. We’ve gathered information from Karen Scheuerer, Manager of Global Action at GSUSA and travel enthusiast, on how to make your dreams for international travel a reality.

1. Make Travel By Girls for Girls
Volunteers agree that girl-led trips are the most successful. When girls decide on a destination, do the research, prepare a budget and plan the itinerary, they are more invested in the project and more committed to meeting their goals.But however much of a leadership role the girls assume, the role of the adult volunteer is essential to helping them stay focused and maintain momentum.

“The girls were getting tired of earning money at the end, but they all decided that it was well worth it when we made it to London.” Linda, IL

2. Plan Early
Experienced volunteers all emphasize the importance of planning. A GSUSA survey reveals that the average time to plan a trip was 22 months.

“We learned that starting the process early, keeping detailed records and communicating with parents regularly are all keys to a successful journey.” Janet, MD

3. Ask Others
Why reinvent the wheel when you can talk to Girl Scout volunteers who have taken troops abroad? Ask them what worked and what didn’t. What would they do differently next time?  If you don’t know volunteers who have taken groups abroad contact Global Girl Scouting globalgirlscouting@girlscouts.org.

4. Stick to Your Goal
Don’t be discouraged if the girls’ families cannot contribute. Many Girl Scouts reach their financial goal through hard work and perseverance. One very committed Girl Scout from Massachusetts spent almost three years collecting cans and bottles to redeem. The money she earned not only was a boon to the environment, but covered the cost of her trip to Australia and provided her with spending money.

For more money-earning guidelines and ideas: www.girlscouts.org/program/gs_central/money_earning/
For travel advice and resources:
www.girlscouts.org/program/gs_central/travel/
Already planning a trip? Let us know, contact globalgirlscouting@girlscouts.org

More than a Trip:
By planning and participating in money-earning projects, girls build real-world skills that benefit their community—but most importantly, themselves. Girls can learn:

  • Budgeting
  • Goal-setting
  • Customer relations
  • Good business practices
  • Public relations

Money-Earning Guidelines

  • Follow Safety-Wise standards.
  • Get council approval for all money-earning projects.
  • Check with your council before soliciting funds from local organizations, foundations or businesses.
  • Set up a group travel bank account that is overseen by a designated adult.

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