How to Be a G.I.R.L. All Summer Long

Summer is here! And while it’s an exciting time filled with outdoor adventures, it can be a little bit of a bummer if your Girl Scout troop doesn’t meet until the school year begins again.

This summer, we’re challenging you to be a G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™ all summer long! Not sure how to do that? Here are some ideas for you.

Go-Getter

Go-getters put the “G” in G.I.R.L. They are bold, ambitious, and determined to succeed. They’re life-long learners who believe no challenge is too difficult.

  • Advance the G.I.R.L. Agenda. The G.I.R.L Agenda is a nonpartisan initiative to inspire, prepare, and mobilize girls and those who care about them to lead positive change through civic action! And with midterm elections coming up this fall, it’s a great time to get informed about issues that are important to you! Research candidates on both sides, and see what ballot initiatives are up for a vote in your area. Check out the Civic Action Toolkit to help you prepare!
  • Prepare for your Highest AwardBronze, Silver, and Gold Awards are the highest honors a Girl Scout can earn. Which make them perfect for a go-getter! All three awards give you the chance to do big things while supporting an issue you care about. You might plant a community garden at your school or inspire others to eat healthy foods. Or maybe you’re advocating for animal rights or building a career network that encourages girls to become scientists! Spend the summer planning out what you’re going to accomplish and what steps you need to take to get there.
  • Start a business! Girl Scouts are businesswomen. The Girl Scout Cookie Program is the largest girl-run business in the world, but you don’t have to wait until January to work on the 5 skills. Set up a lemonade stand, clean out your closet and sell clothes you no longer want or need, or set up a booth at a local craft show!
  • Participate in a reading challenge (or begin your own!). Go-getters are lifelong learners. And with summer vacation in full swing, you’ve got extra time to get some reading in! Join a reading challenge at your local library, or start your own with friends! See who can read and finish the most books before school begins.

Innovator

Innovators bring the “I” to G.I.R.L. They step outside the box to take action and solve problems. Need to get something done? Leave that to the innovators!

  • Make Solar Oven S’mores! Summer isn’t complete without a tasty snack. Try out this safe and innovative way to make s’mores! Check out these Pinterest-ing directions or try out your own method. For more fun, borrow a thermometer to see hot the perfect s’more temperature is!
  • Work on a STEM badge. Not all badges need to be completed with your troop! Spend the summer tinkering with a robot, learning about bugs, or building a computer game! Check out the Badge Explorer to find all of the possibilities.
  • Build a Little Free Library. Interested in perfecting your carpentry skills? Excellent! A Little Free Library is a great way to learn carpentry while helping your community. Use your math skills so your library uses its space most efficiently. How can you arrange the shelves to fit the most books possible? Will it accommodate all sizes of books? Can you design it so it looks just like your house or a local community building?
  • Create your own outdoor game. Everyone loves having fun outdoors in the summer. But after a while, you and your friends might get bored of the same outdoor games you’ve been playing for the past few weeks. Take this opportunity to create your own! Maybe you combine a few of your favorites, or you create something entirely new! Use your imagination!

Risk-taker

Eager to try new things and embrace the unfamiliar, a risk-taker is ready to step up and step out of the mold if that’s what it takes. Risk-takers are curious and courageous, adding the “R” to G.I.R.L.

  • Tackle a high ropes course. There is nothing a risk-taker loves more than an outdoor challenge course! Face your fears at camp this summer as you tackle a high ropes course. Not quite ready for that big of a risk? That’s okay! Try your hand at the low ropes course instead.
  • Work on your National Park Service Ranger Patch. Go on an outdoor adventure at your favorite National Park as you work on your National Park Ranger Patch! Through the patch program, girls are invited to play outdoors, learn about national parks and why they’re preserved, and develop essential leadership skills. What could be better?
  • Plan for a Destinations trip. Destinations are the ultimate adventure for Girl Scouts age 11 and older! Whether or not you’re ready to travel the world with Girl Scouts from around the country, you can spend the summer planning for the trip of a lifetime! How much will you need to fundraise to cover the cost? How will you do it? What do you need to know about the culture before you get there? What are you going to need to bring? Start planning now so you’re ready as soon as your trip arrives!
  • Go rock climbing! Clip into your harness and get ready to tackle your fear of heights! Rock climbing is an adrenaline-pumping activity that can be as easy or as challenging as you want it to be!
  • Camp (even if it’s just in your backyard!). Girl Scouts and camping go together like peanut butter and jelly. Whether you’re heading to Girl Scout Camp this summer or just want to pitch a tent in your backyard, try something new this summer while spending some quality time in the great outdoors!

Leader

What makes a great Leader? She’s confident. Knows how to get the job done. She’s responsible. Committed to making the world a better place. Empathetic. An advocate. And she empowers others.

  • Start a food drive for your local food bank. Take the lead in your community by starting a food drive for your local food bank! Call or visit to find out what they’re most in need of, and then let your friends and community members know how they can help! Once your food drive is done, get a group of people together to deliver all of the items you’ve collected.
  • Volunteer. Similarly, find a cause that’s important to you and spend some time there this summer as a volunteer! If you love animals, offer to walk dogs at your local animal shelter. Or if you’re interested in working with younger kids, see if there’s a summer school program in need of some extra helping hands!
  • Teach younger girls how to play your favorite sport. Do you have a favorite sport? Spend some time this summer teaching younger girls how to play! Learning a new activity, especially something physical like a sport, is much more approachable in an all-girl environment. So gather the girls in your neighborhood and have some fun learning something new!
  • Stand up for what’s right. Is there an issue that’s important to you? Speak up about it! Take the lead in your community by educating others on what’s important to you.
  • Share your Girl Scout story with others. What amazing experiences have you had as a Girl Scout? Let others know so the girls in their lives might have a similar experience! We’re not just about cookies, camp, and crafts, so let friends and family know about your Highest Award project, the community service you’re working on, and the STEM activities you’re participating in!

While your troop might not be meeting actively in the summer, your Girl Scout year doesn’t have to be over! With a little bit of creativity, you can be a G.I.R.L. all summer long. What activity are you going to try first?