Spring is here, and it brings with it the most wonderful time of the year: Girl Scout cookie season. Not only will your Tagalongs and Samoas be delivered to your door this season, Spring also brings Earth Day. The Girl Scouts of America have found a way to marry these happenings to expand the opportunities for young women to make a difference and learn more about how to make an impact. Today’s Girl Scouts are doing more than camping to learn about our earth, they are actively trying to solve the issue of sustainable packaging through their ever-so-popular cookie sales.
“This year, for the first time, the Girl Scouts are selling cookies packaged in a film-overwrapped tray rather than in a paperboard carton containing a tray…by eliminating the carton, the switch will reduce the use of paperboard by 150 tons, enough to fill 14 garbage trucks.” (from SustainablePlant.com) Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama decided to make this change based on feedback they received from scouts about how they could reduce waste and help the environment.
This project touches on so many areas that are important to the work that we do as leadership coaches. The Girls Scouts of America is an organization that supports the development of young women leaders, to help them understand how far their reach can be, how many opportunities they can create for themselves, and the change they can make. This project extends to the importance of taking action to protect our earth and shows how one small change in the supply chain can make a huge difference in the output. The scouts involved in this project were able to get a well-rounded understanding of the business model behind the successful cookie sales, identify a change they wanted to make to support a cause they believed in, rallied behind their cause and made others take notice, and were able to see the success of their efforts with the new packaging.
The leadership and dedication that this group of young women had is something that we look to to drive us to make important changes in our life. The future generation of leaders in America are already blazing a trail for us to follow.
Our hope is that by sharing this story with our audience, we can continue to move the change that this group of scouts created, to show them just how far their efforts can carry. We encourage you to share this idea with troops in your area or work with a youth organization to develop projects like this to help young leaders understand the value of sustainability, leadership, and business initiative.