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Promoting young girls’ growth

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Courage, confidence and character – those are the three words that exemplify what being a Girl Scout is all about.

“By exhibiting those three words, girls are less likely to fall into some of those behaviors that can threaten their lifestyle or very existence,” said Deborah Hearn Smith, CEO of Girl Scouts of Central Indiana. “We are finding more girls are falling through the cracks and are not having those characteristics instilled in them.”

Through leadership development, service and making the world a better place, Girl Scouting provides opportunities for emerging young lionesses in their respective communities. Provided programs and methods of delivery may have had to adapt to today’s girl, yet the core of what it takes to be a successful adult remains the same such as decision making and being comfortable in one’s own skin.

One of Girl Scout’s many programs includes financial literacy. These girls aren’t learning how to save for a piece of jewelry, but about setting financial goals, the dynamics of banking, saving for college and the stock market among others.

Additionally, computer literacy and the math and science center are crucial parts to today’s Girl Scouts activities. Some include experiments and even deconstructing and constructing a computer.

“I’m particularly impressed with the Girl Scout’s focus on engineering, science and math. I truly believe our girls and young women need to hear us cheering them on and encouraging them to excel in these areas,” said Lieutenant Governor Becky Skillman.

On Tuesday, Nov. 10, Skillman will host the Lieutenant Governor’s Girl Scouts of Central Indiana Leadership Luncheon at the Indiana Roof Ballroom. The luncheon honors four recipients of the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest award in Girl Scouting.

WTHR-TV’s Anne Ryder will serve as mistress of ceremonies. There will also be a special performance by Jennifer Stanley, a rising young artist.

“I have quite a bit of experience with Girl Scouts and am proud and very pleased to be hosting this leadership luncheon,” said Skillman. “It’s the leadership opportunities that make this unique. This is a group I want to continue to support.”

In addition to the awards and entertainment, Girl Scouts will also honor Tamika Catchings of the Indiana Fever, Dr. Jo Ann Gora, president of Ball State University and Alecia DeCoudreaux, vice president and general counsel, Lilly USA.

These prominent women will speak about how the “three C’s” have influenced their lives and provided the success they enjoy today.

“I am very supportive of organizations that support women and girls. Girl Scouts is all about investing in the development of young girls. As a result, Girl Scouts is really preparing generations. It truly is an honor for me to receive this recognition,” said DeCoudreaux.

DeCoudreaux recalls how Girl Scouts has impacted her life. Her south side Chicago neighborhood did not provide her with a wealth of opportunities. She states she learned a lot of “life’s basics” such as keeping commitments, honesty and competitiveness early on. If it weren’t for Girl Scouting she would not have enjoyed activities such as going to museums, financial initiatives and even acting.

To perpetuate the cycle of positive, lifelong memories, Jackie Morris, luncheon chair states funds raised from the luncheon will go towards sponsoring a girl for one year of programming. Girl Scouts have increased its efforts to capture target groups such as the Latino community and low-income families.

“We hope people come, have a great time and support scouting,” said Morris.

Many believe today’s girl needs something constructive to belong to and Girl Scouting is the answer to the needs of those girls. Over 40,000 Girl Scouts in Central Indiana is a testament to that belief.

Those numbers give the State of Indiana the potential for forward movement. Girl Scouts is helping to groom future leaders and with financial and volunteer support. All Hoosiers are encouraged to get involved in bringing forth courage, confidence and character into a young girls life.

For more information, call (317) 924-6800 or visit www.girlscoutsindiana.org.

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