Your 2017-18 Early Bird Renewal Guide

It is almost Early Bird time! Your Girl Scout troop can get a head-start for another great year by renewing your Girl Scout membership for 2017-18 starting April 15. Girls and adults can earn special incentives through Early Bird registration. Why wait?

Early Bird Dates: April 15 – June 30, 2017

Why Early Bird?zombies

  • Exclusive Event! We’ll be hosting super-fun zombie-themed events all across the council this summer – FREE for girls who register during Early Bird!
  • Exclusive T-Shirt! Girls and adults who register for the awesome zombie events will be able to order an exclusive zombie t-shirt for $5. EarlyBirdPatch
  • Patches! Every girl who registers during Early Bird gets a cool custom patch.
  • Get $25 for 5! Your troop will get $5 off the adult registration for up to five adult volunteers.
  • Service Unit Fun! If your service unit renews 50% of your Girl Scouts (girl members only) during Early Bird, the service unit will get a $25 gift card to use on something fun for an event!

Early Bird Checklist

  • This year it’s super easy to Early Bird – simply renew the returning girl and adult members in your troop for the 2017-18 year! Membership fees for 2017-18 are $25.

Ready to Get Started?

Check out our handy step-by-step guides, based on how you would like to renew your troop:

We’ve even made a handy fillable flyer you can use to let your troop families know what your Early Bird plans are!

Other Year-End Wrap-Up

As many troops start planning Bridging Ceremonies and Court of Awards events, it’s also a great time to wrap-up a few administrative items that will set you up for success in the fall:

  • Troop Finance Report (Due 6/30/17) – We’ve simplified the Troop Finance Report so it’s easy for troops to report on their finances (we’re required by the IRS to make sure we keep proper records of funds on file).
  • Service Unit Finance Report (Due 6/30/17) – Service Unit Managers: we’ve also created a simple form for reporting on the finances of the service unit bank account!

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Why are Girl Scout membership dues increasing to $25?

A: As the first and largest girl-led organization in the world, we continue to evolve our unique leadership program and implement new technologies and ways of work to enhance the Girl Scout experience for girls, volunteers, and parents. To ensure we have the resources to support this work, the National Board of Girl Scouts of the USA has made a decision to increase the annual membership fee to $25, starting October 1, 2017, for both girl and adult members.

Every dollar of membership dues is sent to Girl Scouts of the USA to cover the cost of fundamental services supporting the Girl Scout Movement including: accident insurance for members participating in approved Girl Scout activities, research, resources, training, and services to councils. You can find more information on the fee change in GSUSA’s Membership FAQ.

Q: What if I renew during Early Bird but can’t make it to one of the zombie events. Can I still get an exclusive t-shirt?

A: We will have additional shirts available (while supplies last) for members who renew during Early Bird to purchase for $5 if they cannot attend one of the events.

Q: What is required to qualify for the Early Bird incentives?

A: All girls registered by June 30 for the 2017-18 year qualify for the Early Bird incentives, including the free patch and exclusive event! For the $25 for 5 Adult incentive, troops must also submit the annual Troop Finance Report on time.

Q: What are the different ways that I can renew my troop?

A: There are a few different ways that your troop can renew during Early Bird:

Q: If girls in my troop renew through Early Bird, how will they register for their exclusive event?

A: Once girls have renewed through Early Bird, they can register for the exclusive Zombie Event in their area! While registering, just make sure that they select the “Free – Early Bird Renewal” price level or the “$5 Early Bird Renewal with exclusive t-shirt” price level.

Q: How do we get the “$25 for 5” to use for adult renewal?

A: Troops will be reimbursed after paying the full membership dues amount. Troops must complete the annual Troop Finance Report (on time) before reimbursement.

Q: How will we know if our service unit reaches the 50% renewal mark to earn the gift card? 

A: We’ll track service unit Early Bird participation, and reach out to Service Unit Managers once their service unit reaches 50% girl renewal. Participation numbers will be tracked as of April 1, 2017.

Q: How can we get the word out to our troop families what our Early Bird renewal plans are?

A: We’ve made a fillable flyer that prints two-per-page! You can type the info your troop families need about Early Bird, print them, and hand them out at your next meeting.

Have any other questions? Give us a call at 800-342-8389, or email us at info@gsiowa.org— we’re here to help!

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