Girl Scouts, on the surface, is an organization that addresses the needs of low-income girls. There are a number of grants available for membership, for uniforms and even for camp. However, these costs do not address the larger systemic problem of access within scouting.
In 2017, The Boy Scouts of the USA voted to allow girls into their program. This decision was driven by a need to increase boy scout enrollments and to address the desire of parents to provide similar programming between the two programs. While Boy Scouts' leadership model is driven by a hands on and outdoors approach, Girl Scouts has received a lot of criticism for being too focused on the social-emotional aspects of leadership. However, supporters argue that the research demonstrates that single-gender environments are the most important for the growth of women leaders.
This story focuses on the ways in which Girl Scouting can be expanded to address the needs of girls in low-income and minority communities. The article discusses a pilot program at a San Diego university that trains Girl Scout leaders in colleges. This kind of program would address the issue of Girl Scouting's waning influence in its local communities and within diverse populations of girls.