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FAQ

What is the Girl Scout Leadership Experience?

Our program centers on what we call the Girl Scout Leadership Experience—a collection of activities and experiences you’ll have as you earn badges, sell cookies, go on exciting trips, explore the outdoors, do Take Action projects that make a difference, and more. See more about the Girl Scout Leadership Experience and why it's so important.

What does Girl Scouts cost and how is it funded?

The Cost – The 2018 girl membership dues are $40, and adult registration fee is $25. These dues help cover the cost of insurance, producing materials, as well as GSUSA and GSME’s general operating expenses.

Financial Aid  Financial Assistance for the annual membership fees can be requested when the family and troop are unable to help with the fee. You can request financial assistance during your online registration with just a click of a button.

Troop dues – Troop dues help cover the cost of troop activities. Dues vary by troop; check with your daughter’s leader to find out the amount of her dues.

Cookies – Our famous cookie activity program is the primary source of funding, as it is for most councils. All proceeds remain here in our council to benefit local girls, and a portion of the proceeds go directly to the troops to fund their activities. Our goal is to reduce dependency on the cookie sale and increase our adult-generated funding.

Individual and corporate support – A volunteer fund development committee and the council’s development director work to secure donations from individuals and corporations.

Fundraising events – The council hosts several events throughout the year to raise funds.

United Way – Girl Scouts of Maine receives contributions for the annual operating budget from several United Ways.

Family Partnership – Family Partnership is designed to give parents the opportunity to help cover the costs of delivering the Girl Scout program to their daughters. With the financial support of parents and community members the council can provide quality programming and leadership to today’s girls.

Planned Giving – The council can help donors designate Girl Scouts as part of their estates.

What is expected of me as a parent?

Take an active role – As a Girl Scout parent you will want to take an active role in your daughter’s Girl Scout experience. You can help with refreshments or transportation, make phone calls, or assist with troop meetings. Ask your daughter’s leaders how you can best assist the troop!

Support activities – Along with troop activities, your active role can include supporting product sales. As a parent you can show your support for your daughter and the council by learning about the sale and following all guidelines and procedures.

Respect leader’s time – Girl Scouts would not be what it is if it were not for the dedicated volunteers. However, your daughter’s troop leader cannot be responsible for girls beyond the time of the actual Girl Scout activity. Please respect the leader’s time by having a responsible person drop your daughter off at the appropriate time and pick her up immediately after the activity.

Who leads the troop?

Trained volunteer leaders – Girl Scout leaders are volunteers who give of their time so girls can have a quality experience in Girl Scouts. Without the many wonderful female and male volunteers the program would not be available to the girls. You can be assured that qualified, responsible people are leading your girl's troop.

Becoming a volunteer – It's easy to become a volunteer! All you have to do is join Girl Scouts for a $15 registration fee. Once you fill in your information, you'll be able to search by zip code and select your volunteer opportunity. Then you'll need to complete a background check and any appropriate training for your desired position. You can start this process at the same time you register your girl!

Is my girl safe in Girl Scouts?

Safety Activity Checkpoints – We know that activities are more fun when everyone feels safe! To ensure this, volunteers are introduced to Safety Activity Checkpoints in training and use them with girls while planning and participating in troop activities.

Insurance – All registered Girl Scouts receive basic accident insurance coverage for Girl Scout activities through national membership dues. This insurance covers up to $100 in medical expenses regardless of other coverage. Additional expenses are only covered if personal family insurance does not cover them.

What forms will I be required to fill out?

Membership Registration – Gives girl permission to be a member of Girl Scouts of the USA. This form also collects race and ethnicity data to help Girl Scouts of the USA track how well we are serving all populations.

Health History – Provides accurate and current health information about your daughter.

Permission Slip – Required for all activities that are not held at the regular troop meeting time or site.

Where can I get all the cool Girl Scout stuff?

Uniforms – Although no girl is required to wear a uniform, the council shops in Bangor and South Portland and online offer numerous uniform pieces for all age levels and adults. Your daughter is encouraged to wear something that shows her pride and identifies her as a Girl Scout.

Other items – Check out the catalog or shop for other items with the Girl Scout insignia We carry everything from water bottles, to hair scrunchies, to mess kits. You can call in, fax or e-mail your order as well as visiting our online shop.

How is the Girl Scout council structured?

Girl Scouts of the USA – Girl Scouts of Maine is one of more than 100 councils in the country chartered by the national organization, Girl Scouts of the USA. Each council operates as a totally separate entity, responsible for its own activities and obtaining its own funding.

Girl Scouts of Maine – Within the council there is a volunteer board of directors, a small number of paid staff and about 3,500 registered volunteers. The council is divided into Service Units and within each Service Units are the local troops. Decisions are made through the democratic process. Delegates from each area vote at the annual meeting in the spring.

Channels of communication – As parents, you are welcome to communicate with any council person at any time. However, standard channels of communication would be to contact your daughter’s troop leader first, then, if necessary, you or the leader can go to the Service Unit manager. The Service Unit manager, in turn, communicates with the council staff through Volunteer Support specialists assigned to your area.

What are the membership requirements for girls?

Membership in Girl Scouts is granted to any girl who:

  • Has made the Girl Scout Promise and accepted the Girl Scout Law
  • Has paid annual or other applicable membership dues
  • Meets applicable membership standards
What are the membership requirements for adults?

Membership in Girl Scouts is granted to any adult who:

  • Accepts the principles and beliefs as stated in the preamble of theGirl Scout Constitution
  • Has paid annual, lifetime, or other applicable membership dues
  • Meets applicable membership standards
What do Girl Scouts do?

Girls in grades K–5 might belong to a troop, learn new skills and earn badges, go on hikes, or head to camp for the first time. Older girls can dig deep into what interests them—they might learn to code, make a PSA, travel to new places, or go on an outdoor adventure. Did we mention the potential for earning college scholarships? Learn more about the different ways to participate.

What Girl Scout activities are most popular?

Girl Scouts offers programs to match almost any girl’s interests. Whether it’s camping and hiking, engaging in awesome science and math activities, exploring the environment, traveling the globe, learning first aid, running a cookie business, or building stronger friendships, girls discover all kinds of activities that stimulate their brains and strengthen their bodies. Looking for something else? Girl Scouts also lets girls build a unique experience around their own specific interests.

What is the best age for a girl to join Girl Scouts?

Any age is a good age to become a Girl Scout! We offer programs for girls from kindergarten to high school, and girls can participate in Girl Scouts from ages 5 to 18. (Girls who are 5 must be eligible for kindergarten; girls who are 18 must be enrolled in high school.) Learn more about Girl Scouts by age group (or grade level).

Were you a Girl Scout? We have an excellent alumnae network for adults.  

When can we join?

Right now! In fact, it's always a good time to join Girl Scouts. Join in time for summer camp, before the new school year, or any time that works best for your family. We’re flexible and can tailor your girl’s experience to her needs.

What does she get from joining Girl Scouts?

Girl Scouts are happy and confident, and they thrive on new adventures and experiences.

A Girl Scout knows she's having fun, but you'll know she's also gaining:

  • Important financial literacy skills (math, anyone?) as she participates in the largest girl-run business in the world—the Girl Scout Cookie Program

  • Healthy relationship skills that will help her navigate through her school years, especially as she moves into middle school and high school

  • Knowledge that will help her in science classes as she builds robots, conducts amazing experiments with her friends, or explores the natural world around her

  • Leadership skills that will make it easier for her to speak up in class and advocate for herself and others

Girls become more empowered as they move through the Girl Scout Leadership Experience, a set of activities and challenges designed to deliver specific benefits to girls at every age level.
Underneath the fun, the Girl Scout Leadership Experience benefits girls in five important ways:

  • STRONG SENSE OF SELF
    Girls develop confidence in themselves and their abilities, and form positive identities.

  • POSITIVE VALUES
    Girls act ethically, honestly, and responsibly, and show concern for others.

  • CHALLENGE SEEKING
    Girls take appropriate risks, try things even if they might fail, and learn from mistakes.

  • HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS
    Girls develop and maintain healthy relationships by communicating their feelings directly and resolving conflicts constructively.

  • COMMUNITY PROBLEM SOLVING
    Girls desire to contribute to the world in purposeful and meaningful ways, learn how to identify problems in the community, and create “action plans” to solve them.

And it doesn't stop there. Joining Girl Scouts helps her excel in every area of her life, including at home and at school.