The Daily Southerner
John H. Walker
ROCKY MOUNT —
The famous Thin Mints remain, but Girl Scouts are giving their cookie boxes an overhaul to highlight the real purpose of the $790-million cookie program, which is to teach girls five essential life skills: goal setting, decision making, money management, business ethics, and people skills.
See, it’s a lot more than some cute young ladies in their uniforms asking you to buy some of their cookies. Instead, it is the largest girl-led business in the world.
And to celebrate the program, Girl Scouts has named Friday as the first ever National Girl Scout Cookie Day.
Because of the conflict with school, local units aren’t planning any special activities, but on most weekends you’ll find them all across Edgecombe County — from Piggly Wiggly and Wal-Mart to Golden East Mall.
Local Girl Scouts, whether a Daisy, Brownie, Junior, Cadette, Senior or Ambassador, have been selling cookies for about three weeks. Customers have a choice of eight flavors, including the ever popular shortbread, peanut butter sandwich, lemonade or the newest flavor, mango crème.
Cookies are $3.50 per box and customers who
buy five boxes are given a certificate with a special code. By going to www.nccoastalpines.org and entering the code, those persons are entered into a contest where they can win free Girl Scout Cookies for a year.
When it comes to skill building, statistics show the Girl Scout Cookie Program works. According to a survey from the Girl Scout Research Institute, 85 percent of Girl Scout “cookie entrepreneurs” learn money management by developing budgets, taking cookie orders, and handling customers’ money. Eighty-three percent build business ethics; 80 percent learn goal setting; 77 percent improve decision making; and 75 percent develop people skills.
All the revenue earned from cookie activities—every penny after paying the baker—stays with the local Girl Scout council that sponsors the sale. Councils use cookie revenue to supply essential services to troops, groups, and individual girls, such as providing program resources and communication support, training adult volunteers, and conducting events. As part of their experience in any Girl Scout product activity, girls can earn official Girl Scout awards at every level of Girl Scouting, including cookie and financial literacy badges and the annual Cookie Activity Pin.
In the first package design update since 1999, the 200 million Girl Scout cookie boxes sold annually now feature a new look that highlights the skills girls learn through the program. A new GSUSA marketing campaign reinforces this more contemporary message with the theme, “This Is What a Girl Can Do.” And, for ease of purchase, customers can now find their Girl Scout Cookies using a free app available for iPhone or Android, or by visiting the newly refreshed official Girl Scout Cookie Finder at www.girlscoutcookies.org.