A young Girl Scout rung my parents' doorbell last night selling cookies and I heard my dad's voice light up when he opened the door to see who it was. And then I lit up. You see, I was a Girl Scout. So when my parents continue to buy Girl Scout cookies each year, I know it goes beyond nostalgia, beyond succumbing to gluttony over calories we most certainly do not need, and beyond sort of "returning the favor" for remembering all those who supported.
Each year my parents continue to support the dreams of girls in our community, because they know how important Girl Scouts was for me. Being in Girl Scouts gave me lifelong friends--sisters, really. It taught me how to be a leader, to do great things that strengthen our community, and always give back to the community. Perhaps I was just lucky, but it was also one of the few places I knew I could always be myself. Looking back and realizing that, that was probably one of the most important things I could have growing up--is the knowledge and security that I am my own person and I can be my own person.
I was really upset when a friend of mine in university called out the capitalist nature of Girl Scout cookies, and ranted about how we shouldn't buy Girl Scout cookies, because most of the money doesn't even go to the individual troops--which is true. Most of the revenue goes back the larger Girl Scouts of America organization. I remember seeing the break down of what percentage went where and whether or not it is right or wrong is irrelevant.
What matters is that that girl selling the cookies reaps rewards beyond revenue and buying Girl Scouts cookies really comes down to the intangible support you give that girl. When you buy cookies from her, you give her courage, you give her encouragement, you show her that her hard work will allow her to realize her dreams. She learns that sometimes you just have to put yourself out there. You also show her that she is part of a community--a community that supports her dreams and aspirations.
When we give our girls the chance to be great leaders, they become great leaders.
Remember that this Girl Scout cookie season, and every Girl Scout cookie season. No matter how ridiculous inflation continues to raise the price on this great American tradition, remember that when you buy cookies from a Girl Scout you're doing a lot more for that little girl, and hopefully one day she'll realize that, too.
BIG LOVE & HUGS