Girl Scouts of Connecticut CEO Mary Barneby recently partnered with Ms President US, a nonprofit organization based in Ridgefield, to help encourage younger girls to aspire to pursue public service.
Ms President US is the brainchild of founder, Liz Fleuette, a Ridgefield resident who is passionate about the need for girls to aspire to leadership roles in government.
On September 8, Barneby led a panel kicking off the new organization whose mission is to “inspire and prepare girls to aim for the highest leadership positions and know they can achieve them.” More than 50 girls in grades 4-8 attended along with 25 high school-aged girls serving as mentors. Many of those who attended were Girl Scouts in Connecticut.
From the boardroom to the courtroom to the caucus room, the need for female leadership has never been clearer or more urgent than it is today—and Girl Scouts has the expertise to give girls and young women the tools they need to empower themselves and assume their rightful role as leaders. Girl Scouts encourages girls from the age of five to be civic minded and take action in their communities.
According to The Girl Scout Impact Study, Girl Scouts are more likely than non-Girl Scouts to participate in:
- Leadership activities when working on a group (79% vs. 44%);
- Community service activities, like volunteering (79% vs. 37%);
- And, see an increase in their desire to solve problems in their communities during middle school, when non-Girl Scouts their age see a dramatic drop in interest and involvement during that time.
The panel included Kate Farrar, Executive Director of the Connecticut Women’s Foundation and Legal Fund, Erin Hanlon, Girl Scout Ambassador, Eloisa Melendez, Norwalk CT City Councilwoman, Girl Scout alumna, and member on the Girl Scouts of Connecticut Board of Directors, and Kayla Reasco, Outreach Aide for U.S. Senator Chris Murphy, who discussed the importance of preparing young girls with the tools, skills, and confidence they need to pursue public service leadership roles.
“It was inspiring to be among so many girls who ‘get’ the importance of having a voice in their government,” said Barneby. “When I asked the girls how many of them believed they could be President of the United States someday, more than a third of them raised their hands. We are hoping for 100% by the end of this program!”
To learn more about Girl Scouts of Connecticut and how to join, visit www.gsofct.org/join. To learn more about Ms President US, visit www.mspresidentus.org.