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Girl Scouts Of The United States Of America

Rating: 2.71 stars   14 reviews 1,471

Nonprofit Issues:

Children & Youth

Address:

420 5th Ave New York NY 10018 USA

Mission:

Since its founding in 1912, Girl Scouts, the world?s largest organization for girls, has offered all girls the opportunity to learn leadership skills and experience the rewards of service to their communities. In partnership with one million adult leaders, Girl Scouts, a diverse and inclusive organization, offers the Girl Scout Leadership Experience to nearly 3 million girl members in every zip code, and in 90 countries around the world. Girl Scouting has a proud history of producing leaders: 70% of today?s Congressional women were once Girl Scouts, as were millions of America?s business executives and community leaders.

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www.girlscouts.org

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Reviews for Girl Scouts Of The United States Of America

Rating: 1 stars  

I was a Girl Scout through my senior year in high school. I enjoyed summer camp, camping with my troop at National Center West and a number of other activities. I enrolled my twin daughters in the new Daisy troop and was asked to lead. I lead for eight years and have just resigned due to poor council leadership. During the last few years I have watched as great "membership specialists" were forced to move on and while the new specialists disappear after 9 months due to lack of recruitment. My husband just told me that the new national leadership encouraged buy outs of the older Scout employees incurring a deficit of more than $300 million. In addition to changing the program and selling the camps, my daughters are now dismayed by the lack of adherence to the original program. I just had to cancel one of their enrollments in camp due to the camp's poor planning and the other daughter did not want to go in the first place. This organization has seen better days and its national and local leadership needs to go. It is being run by a bunch of attorneys who don't care about the girls. They only care about the bottom line and lining their own pockets.

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 3 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I was a Girl Scout in grades 1 - 9. I started volunteering when my daughter joined Girl Scouts, in 1999. When her troop dissolved in 2007 & she joined a different troop, I became Cookie Coordinator for my Service Unit. I started a new troop in 2009, and they are entering 5th grade.

Unfortunately, the national office does not appear to pay attention to its own research, but only to focus groups. The program was changed significantly when my daughter was a girl, and it has been completely changed since then. (10 years!) As a result, girls and leaders are unfamiliar with the program. I had to learn all new programming with my daughter, and I'm having to learn a 3rd program now.

Camps are being sold all over the country, which makes it difficult for troops to camp. Council stores are filled with high profit items, not camping or programming materials. Troops are encouraged to buy patches for every event. The cost of books and uniforms is becoming prohibitive. (Note: two girls in my troop are homeless, with their families couch surfing with friends and relatives.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Girl Scouts needs to get back to the basics. Stop selling camps. Stop selling fluff. Concentrate on the outdoors. Stop making 180 turns every 10 years. Reconstitute almost all of the old badges. Reach out to alumnae. Hire alumnae.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Okay

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

 
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Rating: 1 stars  

Volunteering with our GS council was literally the most horrible experience I have ever had as a volunteer in ANY organization. The staff were outrageously stupid and outright malevolent. In my four years of involvement, I only once heard one paid staff member ask about whether or not their actions would be beneficial for the girls involved.
GS has very obviously become a pyramid scheme for selling cookies but at least now they are partnering with such ethical powerhouses like Nestle and Barbie to make their money (insert sarcasm here). Perhaps someday the girls will be able to sell cookies and earn more than 50 CENTS a box again!!
GS is now about numbers only - the new girls they think are always coming into GS from kindergarten. They could not care less about the older girls in GS and offer them either no programming or completely vapid programming like paper plate crafts for 6th graders. Our council actively discourages use of its camps because they want to sell them to profit the top employees.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Fire every single person in the organization and eliminate the entire, board of directors. Then I would carefully recruit former employees and volunteers to take a limited number of roles and I would give that staff no, "sales goals" or membership goals for at least five years.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

No

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Badly

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

No

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

 
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Rating: 3 stars  

As a Lifetime Girl Scout, 12 years as a girl, more than 50 as an adult, while I am disappointed in the current direction taken by the National Staff, I still believe in the program. As long as caring adult volunteers assist girls in directing their own programming, it will be a strong leadership program. Even our youngest Daisies are able to choose, stretch their abilities, learn, and share. If you don't like where the program is going, become a leader/advisor to a group of great girls and wtch your own life change for the better. I learned leadership, speaking skills, coaching and training skills as a girl that have carried throughout my life. I discovered my skills and abilities in science and math at a time when girls were actively discouraged from these fields. I met people who became lifelong friends, not because we think alike, but because we shared experiences at camp, on the trail, or a training sessions together.
But, and this is a big one, the program is only as strong as the troop leader. Troop leaders who are not supported by their councils/national through good local training, through collaboration and meetings with other leaders and girls, through great local events, can not deliver great program to their girls on a consistent basis.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Require every national and council staff member to actively lead a troop for their entire tenure as a staff member. For every board member to visit at least one troop a month in their jurisdiction. And for each of them to have to go door to door with a dozen boxes of cookies during their areas cookie sale.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Likely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Somewhat badly

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

 
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Rating: 3 stars  

I'm currently volunteering as a troop committee member and as a membership coordinator. I joined Girls Scouts with my daughter when she was in kindergarten, now she is in the fourth grade. We have made a lot of beautiful memories together during scouting activities. I'm disappointed that, as a charity, they only receive three stars. i would like to see them receive four again. I would like to see the CEO's salary tied to the President's salary. The President of the United States receives a salary of $400,000, and I think that ought to be enough for just about anyone. I don't mind that troops only get to keep 15% of what they charge for a box of cookies. I would like to know what percentage goes to council, national and the baker. It is the troop that ultimately delivers the program to the girl, but everyone plays a role, and it wouldn't be the Girl Scouts without everyone.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

 
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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 1 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

I think that Girl Scouts is incredibly top-heavy in terms of administration. I quit buying GS Cookies. The scouts are advised that they may not do any other fundraising if they do not participate in cookie sales. So these little girls trudge door to door, selling cookies for approx. $4 per box (their council decides how much - MT seems to be about there), and the girls make 10-20% of that, so .40 to .80 per box. If I buy 3 boxes, it costs me $12, and if I don't donate the boxes back to the Troop, it's not tax deductible. AND, they've only made between $1.20 to $2.40 for their trouble. Since I'm about to give away $12 anyway (and I really don't need the extra calories), I just donate $12 to the troop. It's as if that little girl sold me 8-10 boxes, and their troop gets to keep every penny - because I donate to the troop, not the organization. And I get a tax deduction.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

No

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 4 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

My troop gets $0.75/box of cookies sold. Could be better, could be worse. Our council has many, many, many programing opportunities that are very low cost. Our greatest costs are transportation and fees by groups outside of the organization. Changing to the new books was also a new but onetime cost to us. We received $350 as Financial Aid to support the costs of two of our troop members. While my local service unit isn't perfect (it's run by volunteers, like myself) it is supported by the council and my feeling is that you get out of GS what you put into it. I feel that both of my daughters and I have grown thanks to our involvement with the Girl Scouts and I appreciate it's inclusiveness and non-secular approach (although there are religious awards available to be earned).

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 1 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

I would like to agree with islandicmay's review. I have heard that the troop only gets a few cents per box for the cookies. Yet, the CEO of this organization gets more than $549,000 plus other perks per year. That salary is completely out of touch with the spirit of volunteerism that the organization attempts to portray. I believe that if all the wonderful volunteers realized this, then there would be a rebellion!

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Unlikely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A little

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

No

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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Rating: 1 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

More funds need to be directed towards the troops and their activities. Fees, cookie money, and profits from required clothing/books mainly support the salaries and benefit packages of CEO and executives. I have worked for free as a cookie mom. Little girls have stood beside me in cold, dark and rainy conditions. Back then, I did not realize how little of the money actually helps the girls scout troop. I also worked (again for free of course) as a co-leader. I had my eyes opened to a unnecessarily highly bureaucratic structure. Now, I give directly to the troop leader to pay for gas, supplies, and fun events for the ACTUAL GIRLS THEMSELVES.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Unsure

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A little

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Somewhat badly

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Unlikely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I am a former Girl Scout, the daughter of a Girl Scout, and the granddaughter of a Girl Scout. I am proud that both of my nieces are continuing the scouting tradition, and look forward to my own daughter joining in a few years. The Girl Scouts grow strong, confident women. I love the many areas of interest that girls can explore, the inclusiveness, and the diversity. Thank you, Girl Scouts, for helping build generations of inquisitive, compassionate, and community-minded women! Now bring on the cookies!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

 
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Review from CharityNavigator