When you think of the Girl Scouts, thoughts of Thin Mints, Samoas and Tagalongs may spring to mind, but the organization is about much more than its popular cookies. Since 1912, the Girl Scouts organization has been delivering on its mission to build girls of courage, confidence and character—girls who grow up to be admirable women like Rebecca Short, Internal Audit Manager for ORIX USA.
Having joined the Girl Scouts in first grade, Rebecca is now a member and periodic volunteer—meaning she helps out at special events—of the Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas (GSNETX), a council comprised of 26,000 girls and 12,500 adult members spread throughout 32 counties.
Last summer, Rebecca volunteered to help at one of the organization’s weeklong summer camps at Bob Woodruff Park in Plano. Dancing, rock climbing, zip lines, archery, outdoor cooking demos and more took center stage and helped solidify the camp experience as Rebecca’s all-time favorite Girl Scouts activity.
If dancing isn’t your think, fear not: Plenty of other volunteer options await members, like the chance to be involved with the new STEM Center of Excellence. The GSNETX is currently transforming a 100-acre camp just 20 miles south of downtown Dallas into a living laboratory where girls from kindergarten through 12tyh grade can explore science, technology, engineering and math activities in a girl-centered outdoor environment. While the facility is currently open, construction is ongoing and slated to be finished in the spring of 2018 – complete with a ropes course, archery range, aquatics center, nature trails, outdoor music garden and more.
One thing about Rebecca that’s remained consistent over the years? Her desire to give back to the community, whether she’s been volunteering with the Girl Scouts, building a home for Habitat for Humanity or serving military families. While her husband was deployed in Iraq, Rebecca helped the families of her husband’s unit stay in touch with their loved ones – a role she was happy to take on.
“There’s a lot of need that isn’t always able to be met by monetary donations, so that’s why I give back of my time as well,” Rebecca says. “Depending on where you live, some charities have an easy time getting volunteers to come, but not necessarily the financial resources. Others struggle with finding the personnel to utilize their resources—so it’s important to remember your time and energy may be needed just as much.”