February 29th, 2024

girl scout signupGirl Scouts of Kansas Heartland Membership Recruiter Melissa Navarette, left, answers questions from a parent Thursday at the sign up event at the Seward County Ag Building. L&T photo/Robert PierceROBERT PIERCE • Leader & Times


Just like many aspects of society, the Girl Scouts organization has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland Membership Recruiter Melissa Navarette said the council, which covers 80 counties in the Sunflower State, too has seen those struggles, and this has made for many adjustments.

Those adjustments, Navarette said, have extended primarily to the virtual world.

“We did a series of Camp at Home for the girls who were able to do it virtually,” she said. “We were also able to do virtual recruitment, so we were able to do some girls that way. Now, we’re doing some events virtually as well to adjust to COVID-19.”

Navarette did say, though, the activities GSKH have been very interactive and have had good response, and planning for activities has involved much in the way of creativity.

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“It’s been very creative as far as setting it up, how to engage the girls and how to appeal to these girls and really make our programs stand out with the programs that are going virtual, making Girl Scouts a priority for them as well,” she said.

Navarette was in Liberal Thursday as part of a sign up event for Girl Scouts, and she said locally for now, plans are to keep activities, including troop meetings, virtual.

“At least for the Liberal area, we are providing virtual troop meetings to keep them engaged until we are able to use our own building, which will be at the beginning of the year,” she said. “We’re offering virtually that experience with our programming. Once we’re able to use our building, we’ll be able to do in-person meetings for them.”

While girls were encouraged to sign up at Thursday’s event at the Seward County Ag Building, Navarette said young ladies can sign up at any time online at www.kansasgirlscouts.org  or calling an area Girl Scouts office.

The recruiter said like everyone else, the Girl Scouts organization is riding out the COVID pandemic, but she said cookie sales, which are scheduled to start in the early part of 2021, are still a go for now.

“I’m sure if COVID-19 is still a big struggle, we’ll have to do some adjustments, but girls are still able to sell virtually with the online sales,” she said. “Maybe this year, we’ll go a little bit more towards that rather than the in-person selling.”

The online option, Navarette said, is something that can be used as an advantage amidst the pandemic.

“The girls are going to adjust just like everybody else, and hopefully, we get some sales that way,” she said.

Council wide, Navarette said COVID-19 has had a big impact on Girl Scouts, but she remains optimistic about what the organization can accomplish.

“It doesn’t mean we haven’t put ourselves out there and explored different options and trial and error to get what we can for our girls and volunteers,” she said.