A Girl Scout Volunteer Close Up!

Meet Ruthanne Weighton! She’s a mommy of three daughters, Girl Scout Brownie troop leader, a regional volunteer Cookie Sale Program manager, and a regional volunteer director.


Ruthanne with her future Girl Scout!

What do you like best about Girl Scouts?

SNACK!  No wait – that’s my girls’ answer. ;-)  What I love best is having all my girls get together and have fun spending time together.  They’re not all best friends at school – they’re in different grades and have different interests – but at meetings and activities, they ARE all best friends for a while.  And I love that the girls can be so actively involved in choosing what our troop does each year – what badges we’ll earn, what activities we want to go to, what service project we’ll do.  The girls are so empowered by that and sometimes they just can’t quite believe they get to make all those choices.

Why should girls join Girl Scouts?

It’s AWESOME!  I’ve watched my oldest daughter grow into a girl who is not hampered by peer pressure; who knows what she thinks,what she believes and what she likes; who is a leader and a go-getter in all things that she does. I *know* in my heart that (even though I’m the best mom in the world!) her 13 years of Girl Scouts played a large part in that.  And now I’m watching my next daughter learning the same things and thinking how wonderful it is that we can be part of something FUN and still have her learn!

What would you change about the world?

I would love it if we could all just get along.  Compromise seems to be something that the world in general has lost.  There are too many ‘me first’ attitudes out there.  If we could all learn to share and be a sister/brother/friend to every Girl Scout/Boy Scout/neighbor out there, just think what the world could be like.

Why is it important for adults to volunteer for Girl Scouts?

I can tell you for certain that without volunteers, there would be no Girl Scouts.  I love the council staff, but there is just no way that they could possibly hope to deliver all the services that Girl Scouts offers without the help of troop leaders, service unit (regional volunteer) teams, and parent volunteers.  Don’t look at volunteering for Girl Scouts as a job or a commitment – it’s an OPPORTUNITY.  An opportunity to connect with girls, to share time with your daughter, to help girls grow, learn, lead and gain the confidence and skills they need to excel in life.

How has being a Girl Scout volunteer influenced your life?

How has it not?!?  I’m actively involved in my daughter’s life.  I *know* her friends.  I’ve influenced the lives of all the girls in my troop – shown them a world that is larger than their school and their town.  I’ve taught them that, even though they’re little, they can DO things that make the world a better place.  As a volunteer in our service unit (region), I’ve helped other leaders in their quest to do the same things – I know I’ve touched the lives of not just the girls in my troops, but in the troops of many others.  And THAT, my friend, is a GREAT feeling that cannot be replaced by anything else, and makes all the time spent MORE than worth it.

What is your favorite part of being a Girl Scout leader?

Being with the girls!  I love being with all my girls, but I especially love leading my daughter’s troop – I get to do so many things with her!  I think that’s the best part – the patches aren’t just something on my daughter’s vest that *she* did – it’s something that we did together!  I’m not just driving her somewhere and dropping her off and then asking how things went afterward – I was there.  I helped her.  I watched her learn and grow.  My oldest and I *still* talk about some of the campouts we went on when she was in grade school – and she’s in college now!  Nothing can replace those memories.  And I still have all the years of Girl Scouts with my youngest daughter to look forward to!

If you’re thinking, I Can’t Wait To Volunteer, visit: www.girlscouts.org/volunteer to start discovering the ways you can influence the next generation of leaders!

About Girl Scouts of Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois

We build girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place.
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