Guest Blog: My Convention Experience

2014 GS Convention 01

By Deborah Mark (right)

There are almost no words to describe the sight of over 6,000 Girl Scouts gathered in one place!  It’s simply wondrous.  From opening until closing, I was proud to represent my council on the national stage.  I loved everything: seeing literally thousands of people in the Girl Scouts uniform, being awed and inspired by terrific (women) motivational speakers, learning more about other councils, enjoying a conversation with our CEO, re-connecting with the women who led my campout and cookout training, meeting so many new people, and especially, seeing my daughter blown away by the “coolness” of Girl Scouting!

Some of the moments which meant the most to me are those which showed how Girl Scouts Nation’s Capital is a leader in the Girl Scout community.  Our statement on the outdoors was terrific—it left everyone buzzing!  Our delegates spoke succinctly on some of the proposed legislation and our girls were front and center on numerous occasions.  People who saw my Nation’s Capital badge were always impressed (and respectful, I might add), especially the Little Brownie Baker staff.

One other moment was especially meaningful.  In 2009, I took my first trip overseas with Girl Scouts, chaperoning a group of 13 girls to Our Chalet in Switzerland.  We spent two days in Bern and fell in love with the city.  This trip launched my love of traveling with girls and inspired me to help create and serve on the Girl Scouts Nation’s Capital Troop Travel Committee.  While in Salt Lake City, I met a young woman from Bern serving her faith mission, and we connected and shared stories.  She mentioned that she had never tasted Girl Scout cookies…and when I returned later in the afternoon with a napkin full of treats, she was moved to tears.

That’s the spirit and power of Girl Scouting: do a good deed daily, because it matters.  The effort you expend to make the world a little better matters, both to the recipient and to you.  It’s why so many adults are still connected with Girl Scouting and why every girl can benefit from this awesome movement.

Our council may be, as CEO Lidia Soto-Harmon said, a large cruise ship which takes time to change course, but we are one heck of boat decked out with bright, gaily-colored lights and streamers and we should all be proud to call ourselves the Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital!