The Girl Scouts of Santa Cruz County seeks to empower girls through courage, confidence, and character through a wide variety of enriching experiences, while helping them develop their full individual potential.
The Girl Scout Movement began more than 100 years ago, when Juliette Gordon Low organized the very first Girl Scout troop in Savannah, GA on March 12, 1912. In the years that followed, Girl Scouts spread across the United States, blazing trails and redefining what was possible for girls everywhere. Today, 1.7 million girls and 750,000 adults, as well as over 50 million alumni, are proud to call themselves Girl Scouts, united across distance and decades by lifelong friendships, shared adventures, and the desire to do big things to make the world a better place.
The Girl Scouts is the preeminent leadership development program for girls in the world. “We take the potential of girls, combine it with fun and robust skill-building programming, and add caring adult mentors and strong female role models, to prepare girls in our community for a lifetime of leadership, adventure, and success, said Jeaneth Sanchez.
The programming focuses on four main areas—STEM, the outdoors, development of life skills, and entrepreneurship—and is designed to meet today’s girls where they are and to grow along with them.
The Girl Scouts of Southern Arizona council was chartered in 1935 and serves girls in Cochise, Graham, Greenlee, Pima, Pinal, and Yuma counties, as well as in Santa Cruz County. We are one 112 Girl Scout councils across the United States. The council currently serves 5,400 girls and 2,100 adult volunteers.
It serves girls ages 5-17, of every race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, ability, gender identity and expression, religion, and geographic location within the council jurisdiction. The community also has dedicated adult volunteers who help deliver our time-tested, researched-backed programming, which serves as role models or mentors inspiring girls to take the lead.
“As the Membership Specialist for Santa Cruz County, I wear many hats! I help new Girl Scouts, volunteers, and troops in Santa Cruz County get started. I also put on local programs and events for our members and the community, while providing resources and support to current Girl Scouts and volunteers as they learn and build new skills, said Sanchez.
As a whole, Girl Scouts of Southern Arizona employees 40 staff members. Research shows that girls learn best in an all-girl, girl-led, and girl-friendly environment. Our Girl Scout Leadership Experience is a one-of-a-kind leadership development program for girls—the inclusive, all-female environment of a Girl Scout troop creates a safe space where girls can try new things, develop a range of skills, take on leadership roles, and just be themselves. Research studies have found the Girl Scouts help girls thrive in five key ways, as they develop a strong sense of self, seek challenges and learn from setbacks, display positive values, form and maintain healthy relationships, and identify and solve problems in their communities.
We currently have 2,100 adult volunteers serving in all kinds of capacities. Troop leaders and co-leaders help girls develop vital leadership skills, form lifelong friendships, and deepen their connection to their community, while our episodic volunteers help out with local programs and events as their schedule permits, and share their passions and expertise with our girls.
“The Girl Scouts are always in need of more adult volunteers! Our volunteers are a dynamic and diverse group, and there’s no one “type” of volunteer—whether you’re a recent college grad, a parent, a retiree, or a Girl Scout alum, we encourage you to get involved. Anyone with a sense of curiosity and adventure can help make Girl Scouting a powerful leadership experience for girls, and our council provides many resources to support our volunteers and empower them to focus on what matters most—creating amazing experiences for girls,” said Sanchez.
According to Jeaneth, the Girl Scouts of Southern Arizona have a strategic fundraising plan, leveraging a diverse portfolio of community support including individual donations, in-kind contributions, grant funding, and corporate sponsorships. “We are especially grateful to have two long-standing supporters directly supporting programs here in Santa Cruz County: UniSource Energy Services and the Country Fair White Elephant Thrift Store.”
For greater sustainability, GSSoAz also generates revenue through retail sales and select program fees (e.g., camp tuition). Every Girl Scout in Southern Arizona can also participate in a fall product sale and the sale of Girl Scout cookies which not only teaches them critical business and financial literacy skills but provides support for troop experiences and travel. Additionally, $1.20 of every box of cookies sold goes toward ensuring equity for all girls through program delivery. For more information about joining the Girl Scouts, volunteering or supporting this local program in Santa Cruz County please contact:
Membership Specialist, Troop Support
Girl Scouts of Southern Arizona
1831 N. Mastick Way
Nogales, AZ 85621