Growing up a Girl Scout


Stephanie Rollet

Ashley N., Casey Little, and Porschia M. holding a troop sign for the Veterans Day Parade.

Casey Little

   In 2011, 16,709 girls in Missouri joined Girl Scouts. Six girls and I formed our own troop. My mom became our troop leader because there wasn’t a preexisting troop in our town, which is how we became Troop 70057. 

   I was excited to start Girl Scouts; it was my chance to make long-lasting friends and connect to my mom who used to be a Girl Scout. The first stage of being a Girl Scout is becoming a Daisy, which happens in kindergarten and lasts till first grade. One of the first things we were taught in Girl Scouts was the Girl Scout Law. 

   “I promise to be honest and fair, friendly and helpful, considerate and caring, courageous and strong, responsible for what I say and do, respect myself and others, respect authority, use resources wisely, make the world a better place, and be a sister to every Girl Scout,” Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of Girl Scouts, said. 

   The laws are represented individually by each flower petal patch earned going through the Daisy Journey to understand the law. 

   I grew up with these values instilled in me, and they have always encouraged me to be better. Growing up, I helped anyone who needed assistance. I was friendly to everyone. Our troop did a lot of things to help our community such as caroling at nursing homes, holding canned and dry food drives around Thanksgiving, and helping with the annual parade in our town.

   The next stage of being a Girl Scout is being a Brownie, which is second through third grade. This is also how Girl Scouts can earn the Bridge to Brownie patch that symbolizes the journey of moving up to a higher level in Girl Scouts. The main patch earned and journey completed while I was a Brownie was the Take Action Project. This project helped us discover our talents and interests while we helped our community. My troop’s Take Action Project was a food drive for animals before Thanksgiving for the local shelters. 

  Being a Brownie also meant we could start doing more trips and activities. Along with the Take Action Project, our troop also did the Outdoor Journey which included three patch activities: First Aid, Cabin Camper, and Hiker. We spent the weekend camping in the cabins up the hill, learning first aid, and making trails for future girls to hike. That was one of my favorite trips because I got to share a cabin with my two best friends. My memories are filled with lots of hushed laughter and stories shared. 

   Brownie Wings is the last patch I earned as a Brownie. This patch went on my Junior sash since it represents Brownies flying up to become a Junior, which is from fourth through fifth grade. 

   As Juniors, we started doing more camping and outdoor activities to earn badges. Some of the patches we earned were  Horseback Riding, Geocacher, Musician, Scribe, Animal Habitats, Gardener, Camper, and Jeweler. Our troop earned these patches during a three day trip at the camp a few towns away. This was one of the most memorable times because we helped younger troops on trails, horseback riding, and staying in the cabins. We were assigned groups to make the work easier, which also allowed us to get to know our girls better and really connect with them. 

   We also started planning our Bronze Award project. The Bronze Award is earned by looking for something in our community that needs improvement and helping the problem. It is the first award my troop and I completed together. We saw that some of the flower gardens around the school were overgrown or damaged, so we got permission from the school to clean up the flower beds and plant new ones. This experience taught me that helping others, even if it’s something small, can  make a lasting difference. 

   After being a Junior, I became a Cadette, which starts in sixth grade and lasts until eighth grade. Being a Cadette was really important to me because it meant I was old enough to start mentoring the younger girls at Girl Scout camp. Every year, we had camp after school let out, and it was run by older troops. The troops planned and carried out activities along with being in charge of our assigned groups and tents. While being a Cadette, I was required to earn the Silver Award. The Silver Award is a lot like the Bronze Award, but the Silver award is to help not only the community, but a bigger cause that is often ignored. Our troop made supply bags for foster children. We discovered that most kids put into the foster system don’t get to take more than the clothes on their backs with them to the foster care facility. So we made fifteen bags that were filled with basic necessities such as toothbrushes and toothpaste, deodorant, and blankets. Through this award, I was taught about the importance of seeing the picture that’s not usually seen, and how a little bit of compassion can change someone’s life. 

   The pandemic hit at the end of my eighth grade year, so that stopped our troop meetings till we figured out Zoom. Then, I moved halfway across the country which meant leaving behind my troop. I will always remember the experiences from being a Girl Scout that shaped me to be the person I am today, which made me a better leader who is strong-willed and reliable. With these qualities, I now have many open doors for a good future in anything I could imagine.

Daisy E. and Casey Little, working at a cookie booth. (Heather McAtee)