Girls are trading tents for technology, while still getting outside and achieving badge work. For decades, Girl Scouts across Pennsylvania flocked to Girl Scout camps, learning camping skills, badges, and most importantly, making friends. Due to COVID 19, however, Girl Scouts of Western PA moved to a different platform. As public relations director for the Girl Scouts, Stefanie Marshall, emphasized “the magic of camp”, an experience she contended delivers lifelong memories. While this is true, girls will at least have the opportunity to have some camp fun at home.
Each week has an option for two different sessions that each have different themes. Girls have the option to focus on nature, art, space, etc with hopes that each camper will be able to participate in something that peaks their interests. Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, the girls participate in badge work via Zoom. They view different pre-recorded videos that lead them in different activities on Wednesdays. On Monday nights, girls have the option to have their families call in with them for family fun nights. Wednesdays, on Facebook live, girls can join in a live streamed campfire
. Girls can watch videos of counselor’s favorite spots at the physical camp. Throughout the week, the girls will receive videos from the camp director to encourage them and inspire adventure. The girls will also watch videos from Camp Rangers, including some that answer Scout submitted questions. This way, girls can try to capture a little of that magic that camp provides.
Camp is open to all Girl Scouts, from kindergarten to twelfth grade. Badge work is curated to each age level, opening up camp to more girls than before. For those not yet comfortable leaving their parents or who live in a more rural setting, this virtual platform gives them the ability to connect with friends they might not had access to in another setting. The camp is geared to try to get girls to explore their own neck of the woods and find things outside that maybe they didn’t know were there before.
Camp runs Monday through Friday until August 7th. Girls can put their cookie bucks towards the $25 per week cost. Financial aid is available to families who need it for up to eight weeks of camp, with 80% of the cost being covered. Girls can join any session they’d like at any time. After camp ends, all scouts who participate will be mailed their badges and camp patch.
For more information and a full schedule of each session, click here!