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A letter from Patricia A. Burkart, CEO of GSWPA

As you may have seen in the news recently, Boy Scouts of America is considering expanding its programming to include girls. While BSA hasn't announced its decision, I wanted to take this opportunity to highlight the importance of Girl Scouts and explain why an all-girl, girl-led leadership experience is best.

Since its founding in 1912, Girl Scouts has focused one hundred percent on girls and their healthy development. Only Girl Scouts brings a century's worth of experience to creating research-backed, girl-approved methods and programs through the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

Research shows that single-gender environments benefit both girls and boys. Compared to coed settings, single-gender settings lessen the impact of gender stereotypes that can influence the activities and subjects children choose to pursue. 

In Girl Scouts, girls feel empowered to speak up, to explore leadership roles, and to try new things without the distractions or pressures that can be found in a coed environment. Studies by the Girl Scout Research Institute and others show that girls value girls-only "safe spaces" where they can confide in trusted adults and other girls.

These "safe spaces" are possible because of the strong, caring role models who support and guide girls through every experience in Girl Scouting. Our volunteer troop leaders are the Girl Scouts mission in action--helping build girls of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place. We couldn't fulfill our mission without them, and we're grateful for their dedication to helping girls thrive and succeed. 

Only Girl Scouts offers girls a one-of-a-kind opportunity to engage in high-level leadership through the Girl Scout Gold Award, the most prestigious award in the world for girls. Every Girl Scout that answers the call to "go Gold" addresses an important community issue and takes action to help make her corner of the world better. 

The successful outcomes of Girl Scouts are proven. Women who experienced the benefits of Girl Scouts in their youth exceed in life. For example, they:

  • Have more successful careers
  • Enjoy higher household and personal income
  • Are more active as mentors and community volunteers
  • Vote more regularly
  • Are better educated  

By choosing Girl Scouts, you're investing in the best leadership experience for girls. They are at the center of all we do, and we will continue to make girls our priority, now and in the future.


Yours in Girl Scouting,

Patricia A. Burkart

Chief Executive Officer