June 2016: Your Checklist for Success

Need a refresher from last month? Check out the May Checklist. 

Need to download and print a copy of the June Checklist? Click here!

Early Bird Renewal

  • It’s not too late to renew your troop and complete the Early Bird checklist for 2016-2017 Girl Scout year!
  • Participating leaders earn an adorable hedgehog t-shirt and all girls will receive a fun patch.
  • Check out the easy troop renewal steps in our Early Bird Guide on The Bridge!

Troop/SU Finance Reports

  • The Troop/Service Unit Finance Report, submitted along with a copy of your most recent bank statement, is required for all troops and service units, with a deadline of June 30.
  • Gather the following to get started:
    • Troop or Service Unit Bank Statement.
    • Last year’s finance report with beginning balance July 1, 2015 (if applicable).
    • Receipts & check book ledger.
    • Details on any troop income, including troop dues, membership fees, donations, or money earning projects.
    • Product Program information:
      • Troop’s total funds collected during Fall Product Program – available from NutE T2 report.
      • Troop’s total amount withdrawn for Fall Product Program – by ACH sweeps.
      • Troop’s total funds collected during Cookie program – available from SNAP Troop Balance Summary.
      • Troop’s total amount withdrawn for Cookie program – by ACH sweeps
      • Details on any girl shortages from product program.
    • Hint: you cannot save the online form and go back to it, so be sure to maintain a copy of all your information, in case you have any technical issues with the online form.

Summer of Service

The Girl Scout fun does not have to stop over the summer! Summer of Service is an initiative to encourage and recognize community service hours completed by Greater Iowa Girl Scouts.

Any projects completed June 1 – September 30, 2016 count toward Summer of Service — check out this Bridge post for more details.

Camp Registration

  • For even more Girl Scout fun this summer, please remind your troop families about summer camp opportunities!
  • To view camp offerings, visit our online Events Calendar or Event List.
  • Hint: from the calendar, click on the event once to see a snapshot, and then click the event title to open the event page. Every event page has a green “Register Now” button that directs you to the registration system
  • Girls can use their Cookie Dough, Munch Money, and Juliette Program Credits for summer camp and other programs — it’s a great way to use these funds before they expire September 15, 2016!
  • Families new to Girl Scout camp may have lots of questions! All of the information on camps can be found here, and we’re happy to answer questions at info@gsiowa.org.

Fall Volunteer Retreat Save-the-Date

Mark your calendars! This year’s fall volunteer retreat dates have been finalized. Keep an eye out for more information on the training sessions you can take at this special weekend at camp with your fellow volunteers!

Details: October 7-9, 2016 at Camp Sacajawea near Boone, Iowa.

Where To Find the Information You Need

Once of the primary questions we receive from leaders, new and experienced, is “How do I find out the information that I need to know about Girl Scouts?” Here’s a list of ways to get caught up on the latest communications from GSGI:

  • Subscribe to The Bridge (go to gsgibridge.com) and click “Follow” to receive every new Bridge post in your email inbox.
  • Head to the Volunteer Learning Portal to catch up on the online training options. We recommend these great (and convenient) trainings for new and returning leaders
  • Find the Circle of Success happening near you in July or August – more details to come soon! These sessions will be held across the council to help you jump-start the membership year and connect with other Girl Scout leaders.

June To-Dos

Summer of Service: Let’s Work Together!

What is Summer of Service?

Girl Scouts have rich a tradition of giving back to their communities through thoughtful, lasting service projects. Summer of Service is an initiative to encourage and recognize community service hours completed by our GSGI Girl Scouts this summer (there’s even a cool free patch). We are especially interested in encouraging projects which focus on community gardening and support of food assistance programs!

When is Summer of Service?

All summer long! Any projects completed June 1 – September 30, 2016 count toward Summer of Service.

How do I get involved?

We, along with our friends at DuPont Pioneer, are encouraging girls to examine food and environmental needs in their communities! Troops and individual girls can start by completing the AgJourney, available at your local leadership center (for details and to request a kit, check out our Program Kits page).

Next, girls can take the information they’ve learned about careers in agriculture to come up with a service activity to do in their community.

However, any summer service projects that are completed by Girl Scouts will count toward the Summer of Service project. We want to hear about what girls are doing to make the world a better place!

Why is Summer of Service great for girls?

Girl Scout activities during the summer keep girls excited about returning in the fall, and also allow them to explore whole new areas of interest. This is an opportunity for girls to put their values into action and discover how they can change the world through food, science, conservation– maybe even turning it into a career someday!

We did a Summer of Service project! What next?

Share your story with us! Use the Summer of Service Form on our website to share your awesome projects (and don’t forget to take some photos to share, too).

Then, shout it from the rooftops — post about your project on social media with the hashtag #gsgiserves to spread the word about what Girl Scouts are doing!

To thank you for your troop or service unit’s time and impact, we’ll even send you a Summer of Service fun patch!

Have any questions? Email us at info@gsiowa.org, or give us a call at 800-342-8389.

We can’t wait to hear all of the amazing things Girl Scouts accomplish this summer!


Join Us at an Early Bird Cafe Near You!

Troop Leaders, you’re invited to join us at an Early Bird Café near you!

These events are coming up around the council, where your friendly Troop Support Team will be available to help with your online troop renewals and your annual Troop Finance Report. 

Whether you are renewing all your troop members, or just want to ask some questions, we encourage you to stop by for some light snacks, conversation, and help with any questions you may have. You do not need to register for these events – feel free to choose the date and location that works for you.  All events are ‘Open House’ style, so you can drop in at any point.

At each event, we will have some computers available for you to use, but feel free to bring your own device such as your smartphone or tablet! We can collect your Troop Finance Report at that time as well, so please be sure to bring it with you, along with a copy of your most recent bank statement. You can find the online form on our website.

Want more information about Early Bird? Check out our handy Early Bird guide!

Find the Early Bird Café near you:

Council Bluffs Early Bird Café

  • Thursday, May 5 from 6 – 8 p.m.
  • Council Bluffs Leadership Center
  • 1860 Madison Avenue

Ankeny Early Bird Café

  • Monday, May 9 from 6 – 7 p.m.
  • Holy Trinity Lutheran Church
  • 517 SW Des Moines Street

Oskaloosa Early Bird Café

  • Wednesday, May 11 from 4 – 6 p.m.
  • Smokey Row Coffee Co., 109 S Market St

Panora Early Bird Café

  • Wednesday, May 11 from 5 – 7 p.m.
  • PJ’s Drive-In Diner, 600 E Main

Des Moines Area Early Bird S’mores Cookout

  • Thursday, May 12 from 3 – 7 p.m.
  • GSGI Des Moines Leadership Center, 10715 Hickman Road

Sioux City Early Bird Café

  • Thursday, May 12 from 6 – 8 p.m.
  • GSGI Sioux City Leadership Center, 1515 Zenith Drive

Storm Lake Early Bird Café

  • Tuesday, May 17 from 4 – 6 p.m.
  • Storm Lake Public Library, 609 Cayuga Street

LeMars Early Bird Café

  • Thursday, May 19 from 4 – 6 p.m.
  • Blue Bunny Ice Cream Parlor & Museum, 115 Central Avenue

Ames Early Bird Café

  • Thursday, May 19 from 4 – 6 p.m.
  • Ames Public Library, Danfoss Room, 515 Douglas Avenue

Algona Early Bird Café

  • Monday, May 23 from 4 – 6 p.m.
  • The Chocolate Season, 16 E State Street

Creston Early Bird Café

  • Wednesday, May 25 from 5 – 7 p.m.
  • Subway, 602 W Taylor Street

Greene Early Bird Café

  • Saturday, June 11 from 8:30 – 10:30 a.m.
  • Black Sheep Coffee Baa, 109 S 2nd Street

Mason City Early Bird Café

  • Monday, June 20 from 4-6 p.m.
  • Mason City Leadership Center, 601 S Illinois Avenue