Update on Haven H. (from mom, Shannon)

Haven has a passion for photography. She has an artist’s heart and you can see it in her pictures. She just made state in her competition with a program though her school called Skills USA. This is her second year competing. She took second place regional with her pictures and now at state level, they assign an professional photographer to work with Haven and show her different techniques to really open up her range for shooting photos.

Haven’s motto is “doesn’t matter which camera you use, you can take a good photo on any camera. It’s the angle that you shoot and the life you capture that counts.” (To prove this some of the pictures she took for competition she did with an Iphone. Can you tell which ones???)

The great thing about Haven is she still is a green blood girl scout though and though… with her passion for taking pictures she’s using it to help in the community. Haven is doing senior portraits for kids at her school. Some that can’t afford the ones though the school, or some that are not very confident.

I’ll keep you posted on how it goes at State which is in April.

**Below are pictures taken by Haven**






College Update by Ashley L.

by Ashley L. (former Gold Award recipient and STEM advocate)

What’s up everyone? Sorry that I haven’t updated on Facebook a lot, but it’s been quite a busy, and stressful, semester at college. I’d even argue it’s been the most stressful period of my life so far. It was rough, but I’m here to tell the tale!

So my semester started a few weeks before actual classes started. As a Resident Assistant (RA), I needed to be trained how to provide the best Care, Costumer Service, and Community for my residents. As an RA, I needed to be able to do basic administrative tasks for housing, like checking people into rooms, and making sure that they’re living situations are safe and clean. However, I also need to care for the residents individually and make sure they’re transitioning well to campus. To help them succeed on campus, I have to help them connect to the other people on their floor so that they feel comfortable in their living space. We had extensive training on how to accomplish all of this, while getting to know everyone on the staff better. So far the best experience of being an RA is having a new circle of friends, who help you with your events and help you solve problems you’re facing in your community.

All the RA's

All the RA’s

Sooner than I was expecting, fall orientation was finally upon us! It was extremely busy, but I met all of my residents and welcomed them all to the hall! That’s the most chipper I’ve ever acted ever. I was literally skipping around because I was excited to meet and get to know my residents. Orientation has always been fun, but as an RA I was a much bigger part of it.

Along with my Resident Assistant duties, I also had to help out with RHA with their orientation event (the organization that I was an executive board member of the previous year).

Me Running the Orientation Blacklight Dance

Me Running the Orientation Blacklight Dance

Toward the end of the semester, I started to build up my relationships with my residents. I really do like all of them, but it’s very hard to build a community on a floor so diverse! Out of my 30 residents, I have 3 international students, 4 flight team members (which is a big deal on our campus), 3 greek life members, 3 ROTC members (one of which is the only female cadet to make it into the Air Force Honor Society this year!), 1 Global Security and Intelligence Studies major, and a bunch of other engineers and pilots. So to address this problem, I had them all take a programming survey. I now have a more solid plan for the spring semester, but creating a community will be a challenge.
RHA’s Float for the Shopping Cart Parade

RHA’s Float for the Shopping Cart Parade

And that was only one side of the coin this semester! I knew being an RA would be difficult, so I decided to only take 13 credit hours. I ended up taking Thermodynamics (a study of energy conservation), Aerodynamics (how a wing is able to generate lift), Space Mechanics (learning to calculate the velocity needed to change a satellite’s orbit or send it to a different planet), Solid Mechanics (learning how to design something so it won’t fail), and a physics lab. Solid Mechanics was by far my hardest class this semester, but I am so glad I passed it! My gpa is still really good for an engineering major.

A Sample of Thermodynamics

A Sample of Thermodynamics

As for next semester, I’m looking at 14 credit hours, with really cool classes like Space Propulsion and Experimental Space Systems. I’m taking a light semester again because I’ll have a secondary job! This job is about 10 hours a week, grading homework for a digital circuit class I passed with flying colors my freshman year. Unfortunately, that means I won’t have time for SpaceGrant and RHA, so I’ve become pretty inactive in those organizations. But despite that, this is the first semester that I won’t have to pay anything out of pocket for! My tuition and housing are covered, thanks to a scholarship I earned.

This was a tough semester, but I have a feeling that this next semester will turn out much better! Hope you had happy holidays!

Girl Scout Troop 3113: Robotics Journey

Troop 3113 went on an exciting adventure this fall when they became TeamABC3113 to compete in the Central Valley Robotics First Lego League. ABC stands for Adventurous, Brave and Curious. The girls were so excited when they began to assemble the Nature’s Fury mission models and got the robot programmed to turn and go backwards and forwards. That was just the beginning. We started to meet twice weekly. We had a team working on the Project and another team working on the programming. When the girls wanted to switch and try something different, they let us know. We were in uncharted waters together.

cal fireThe 2013 FLL challenge was Natures Fury and our team decided that they would like to base our Project research on the Rim Fire. We visited the Cal fire offices in Sanger to learn about how fires are fought. We learned how the fire responders care for their equipment and how they work as a team. We learned about what kind of damage the Rim Fire did to the land and how it burned so hot it turned wooded forests into moonscapes. It damaged the habitats of endangered species. After several sessions of internet research the girls decided that they liked the idea of inventing a robotic mouse that was solar powered, programmed to detect smoke and lead animals away from dangerous fires. One of the girls took on the responsibility of writing the entire presentation skit and casted the girls herself. We found a younger brother to play the part of the mouse. The project play was a smash hit and so much fun.

We quickly discovered that programming was fun, but challenging. It was something that the girls had never done before, and it required a lot of patience because of the trial-and-error process involved in successfully completing each mission. First, it had to be decided what missions would be done, how the missions would be done, how to program the robot to do the mission, and finally how to fix mistakes along the way. Two or three girls worked together to do this. Sometimes it seemed like no matter what the robot would not cooperate- and why were we doing this anyway?? I told them that in real-life situations grown ups learn to solve problems by working together. That means they respect each others ideas, they listen to what other people have to say and they try out things. They recognize that problem solving is a creative activity and they learn to have fun while they work. They learned that problem solving was not easy, but there was great reward in achieving a successful mission. We hung out together, ate meals together, played together; We were like a family.GS working on robot - Cropped

Competition was exciting and scary. Our first qualifying round was tough. We weren’t sure what to do, and our robot went all sideways and wrong. No worries, afterwards we headed off to the practice table and refined our strategy. At the second round, success! We more than doubled our points! We headed back to the practice table again, and at the final mission we added ten more points to our final round totals. We were so proud to come in 13th out of 23 teams. We were so happy and had so much fun- we felt like we came in first.

During the day the girls were interviewed about me. I waited outside and afterwards they came out, ran toward me and gave me a big hug. Later on I found I won the Coaches Award. I could not believe it. I am still stunned and amazed that not only did I survive the crazy robot journey, but that I made a big enough impression upon my girls that I was recognized in this way. There is no better present under my Christmas tree than my FLL Coaches Award. I am so proud of my girls, and I can’t wait to continue our Girl Scout journey together.

(Tanya Desmond, Troop leader 3113)

Troop 2583 Celebrates International Girls Day

international-girl-dayDear Girl Scouts,

Troop 2583 (Kings County, Central California South, 9-10 year old GS Juniors) of Lemoore, California, celebrated International Girls Day at their meeting on November 7, 2013.

Through a variety of activities, the leaders of the troop aimed to build confidence among the girls and help them to know each other better.  The meeting started off with a collage of their baby pictures.  The girls had to guess which picture belonged to which girl.  Discussions about what their lives were like at the time the picture was taken and how their lives have changed helped the girls learn more about each other.  This discussion was especially interesting since many of the girls are military children and do not live in the same place they were born.

International Girls Day cards were given to each girl and they wrote positive, inspirational messages to each other on their cards.   Slips of paper were handed out with different questions for the girls to answer.  They took turns answering, What makes a good role model? If you were a superhero, what would your power be?  What qualities make a good friend?  We also discussed self-esteem and education with role models such as Condoleezza Rice, Marie Curie, and Malala Yousafzai.

The meeting ended with the Girl Scout promise and friendship circle.  The girls were given a copy of the confidence pledge, an International Girls Day certificate and patch, lifesavers, post-it note pad and pencil to take home.  The pencil is symbolic of the importance of their education, their friendships are their lifesavers and post-it notes with encouraging words were fun for them to write.  The girls enjoyed their meeting and were excited to receive their patch and certificate for participating in International Girls Day 2013.


Ashley A.
Co-Leader Troop 2583

Girl Scout Leadership Experience

The Girl Scout Leadership Experience engages girls in discovering self, connecting with others and taking action to make the world a better place. All Girl Scout experiences are intentionally designed to tie to one or more of the 15 national leadership outcomes, or benefits, categorized under three keys to leadership:

o Discover: Girls understand themselves, their values and use their knowledge and skills to explore the world.

o Connect: Girls care about, inspire and team with others locally and globally.

o Take Action: Girls act to make the world a better place.

The Girl Scout Leadership Experience provides three processes for adults to incorporate in activities when partnering with girls: Girl- Led, Cooperative Learning and Learning by Doing. These three processes promote the fun and friendship that, for nearly 100 years, have been integral to Girl Scouting. But they do even more—when girls lead, when they learn by doing and when they engage in cooperative learning, the 15 leadership outcomes (or benefits) discussed in the preceding section are far more likely to be understood and achieved. The key to achieving these results using the program processes is to ensure progression takes place as girls transition from one Girl Scout Grade Level to another. For example, Girl Scout Daisies will be guided by the adult leadership through the Learning by Doing process but when they become Girl Scout Seniors they may be guiding themselves through that process or asking much deeper questions.


The Girl Scout Research Institute, based in New York City, provides a focus for our program development and advocacy efforts as it produces original research on what girls say about important topics of the day, and share what they need for healthy development into leadership.

Visit www.gsusa.org for even more information about the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

For more information, contact: sdelarosa@girlscoutsccs.org


101 Days of Summer Challenge: Completed by Mallory O.

Mallory O'RourkeDear GSCCS,

Mallory O. chose to participate in the community service project this summer. We saved plastic water bottles and aluminum cans. She also asked her adult cousin to help. Mallory was able to make a little over $20.00 with her recyclables.

Mallory learned how to do many new things this summer including playing four square, learning to crochet, making rock candy and God’s eyes. She also worked on friendship bracelets, learned how jacks-n-balls are played and how to use vinegar and baking soda to make a volcanic eruption. She participated in a Brownie home science workshop where she learned about density, how to make invisible ink and “dinosaur shot” , learned about static electricity and how to make ice cream.
Some of the things were new to Mallory and some she had done before. She repeated swimming lessons, but did her first ballet recital. She went bowling again and played pool for the first time.

She has had a wonderful summer growing and learning. Before the end of September, she will attend Boy Scout Family Camp with our family and make more sandcastles at Pismo. As the weather cools down, we hope to fit in our annual backyard campout and accomplish more of the list!

Thank you,
Serena and Mallory
Troop 3046, SU 25

Letter from Gold Awardee, Megan

Hello Cathy,
I hope you’re having a great summer and all is well! During my first week of summer I traveled to Europe with my family. We were able to visit the highlights of Rome all in a day, experience some Flamenco dancing in Spain and even got to walk down the famous La Rambla street in Barcelona.

Once we returned it was straight back to school for me! I decided to stay at UCSB and take some summer school classes to get ahead. Along with that came moving into my very first apartment. What an exciting experience this has been! Much better than the dorms, but also a very good experience. I had a lot of fun apartment shopping and getting everything ready for school. School has been going very well and fall quarter is just around the corner and I’m excited for a new year filled with new adventures!

I hope everyone fully enjoyed their summer!
Megan and Hope

Cassidee’s Gold Award eases pain

According to the American Cancer Society, an estimated 12, 549,000 people currently in the United States have or are battling cancer. The process of fighting cancer is different for everyone, but overall is a painful experience. Even the little day to day things, like wearing a seatbelt, become painful.

When cancer patients have a port surgically installed to receive treatment, it is placed right where a seatbelt would go, causing discomfort. Girl Scout Cassidee S. from Bakersfield recognized that this was a common complaint shared by her best friend and her mother’s friends who all dealt with cancer. She decided to do something – Project Port Pillow was born.

Cassidee made hundreds of Port Pillows, which are 5-by-5-inch pillows with a Velcro strap that goes over the port to relieve the pain. These pillows were delivered with a inspirational message for the patients. This project and Cassidee’s hard work earned her the Gold Award, the highest award a Girl Scout can earn. Earning the Gold Award requires hours of planning and implementing a challenging, large-scale project that is innovative, engages others, and has a lasting impact on its targeted community. Cassidee not only earned her Gold Award, but her story and her project inspired others to make their own Port Pillows to donate to cancer patients.

Cassidee’s project was shared widely by local radio stations and newspapers. Blogger Denise Portugal wrote a post about receiving a small Port Pillow at the Bakersfield Relay for Life and invited readers to make their own as a sewing project.

Read her blog at countingby12s.com/denise-portugal/chemotherapy-port-pillow/.

To the left is Cassidee at Kern Medical Center, the middle is Dr. Denise Portugal, General Surgeon, the far left is Betty, a Nurse Practitioner in the Oncology Dept. Dr. Denise Portugal wrote the blog about the project. The day photographed, Cassidee delivered 50 Port Pillows.

Splash Off 2013

Splash Off 2013 – Wild Waters

Who: Girl Scouts family and friends participating in Early Bird Re-Registration for the 2013/2014 year!

Where: Wild Water Adventure Park, Clovis, California

When: Saturday, July 13, 2013 from 11:00 AM – 8:00 PM

Cost: $16 per person

ALL children MUST be accompanied by an adult, this is a family event.

Note: You may bring your own food and refreshments, but no glass containers or alcoholic beverages are allowed in the park.

Splash Off 2013 – Hurricane Harbor

Who: Girl Scouts family and friends participating in Early Bird Re-Registration for the 2013/2014 year!

Where: Hurricane Harbor, Valencia, California

When: Saturday, July 20, 2013 from 10:30 AM – 7:00 PM

Cost: Bargain price! $22.50 per person (regular $38.99, or $30.99 for a child under 48”)

ALL children MUST be accompanied by an adult, this is a family event.


To register and for more information, please contact Melissa Souza at msoza@girlscoutsccs.org or call 559-291-5078 ext. 116

Alumnae Survey Results

Thank you to the fantastic 118 Alumnae that participated in our survey! This survey helps us better
understand your needs and better serve our Girl Scouts of Central California South alumnae community. Make sure to attend our upcoming alumnae event! Details at the bottom of the page!

Question 1. What are your interests?
Results: Top 3 interests
1. Family (83.2%)
2. Travel (69.0%)
3. Arts/Crafts (67.3%)
#1 suggestion: Scrapbooking


Question 2. How do you like to get together with other Girl Scout Alumnae?
Results: Top 3 ways to get together:
1. Attend an event together (81.3%)
2. Games (cards, puzzles, Bunco) (43.9%)
3. Craft Event (42.1%)

Question 3. What time is best for you to gather with other alumnae?
Results: Best time to gather:
1. Weekends (67.6%)
2. After 5 PM, M-F (60.2%)

Question 4. How are you currently volunteering with GSCCS?[break]
1. Troop Leader (64.6%)
2. Co-Leader or Cookie Chair (29.2%)
3. Service Unit Manager (12.5%)
4. Other (3%)

Question 5. Are you interested in volunteering? Volunteering in additional ways? If so, what events would you want to volunteer at?
Results: Volunteer Interests:
1. Camping (27.7%)
2. Major events (25.5%)
3. Sitting on a committee (23.4%)
4. Event planning/event set up (17.0%)
5. Specialized Skill workshops (14.9%)

Question 6. Would you want to receive an:

1. Newsletter covering both Alumnae and GSCCS news (63.8%)
2. Alumnae Newsletter (25.0%)
3. GSCCS Newsletter (20.0%)

Question 7. What social media networks do you use?
1. Facebook (84.1%)
2. Pinterest (45.0%)
3. YouTube (25.2%)
4. LinkedIn (22.4%)
5. Twitter (15.0%)
6. Instagram (14.0%)
7. Google+ (11.2%)

Question 8. Did you attend an alumnae tea or Gather, Gab, and Girl Scouts breakfast?
1. Yes (14.0%)
2. No (54.1%)
3. What was that? I want more information (32.4%)
Those that attended loved them and want more.

Question 9. Did you receive a:
Gold Award (0%)
Silver Award (20.0%)
Bronze Award (0.0%)
First Class (60.0%)
Curved Bar (20.0%)
Golden Eaglet (20.0%)

8 new members were added to our Gold Award Alliance from this survey.

Question 10. How would you like to be involved as a Girl Scout Alumna?

1. Just hear what is going on (67.6%)
2. Continue to volunteer (56.8%)
3. Networking/Connection (20.0%)
4. Give back in another way (2.0%)

Let’s get together!!!

Gather, Gab, and Girl Scouts Scrapbooking!
(Our #1 suggested activity based on the Alumnae Survey)

Bakersfield: The Gather, Gab, & Girl Scouts “Alumnae Scrapbooking Event” in Bakersfield scheduled for Saturday, August 17th has been postponed due to low number of RSVPs. We will reschedule once summer is over!!


We are looking for Scrapbooking-On-a-Budget lead volunteers!
We need your help to lead a scrapbooking activity at our alumnae summer gathering!!
If you are interested please contact
Dominique Chamberlain at 800-490-8653 ext. 130 or dchamberlain@girlscoutsccs.org