What is the council service fee?
Girl Scout members pay an annual membership fee ($15) that goes directly to Girl Scouts of the USA. None of that annual membership fee stays locally within our council. The $15 Council Service Fee (CSF) supports the operation of our local Girl Scout council in Monmouth and Ocean counties the same way the $25 national membership fee supports the operation of GSUSA.
Who approved the Council Service Fee?
Girl Scout volunteer delegates from across the country overwhelming approved the Council Service Fee at the 52nd GSUSA National Council Session in November 2011. They strongly felt that adding the CSF was necessary given the substantial value of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.
How is money from the Council Service Fee spent?
Our council heavily subsidizes the cost of girl activities, events, adult leadership development and council-sponsored programs. The CSF supports the operation of the Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore. This includes:
- General operating expenses for all council properties, service centers, and camps including utilities, insurance, maintenance and capital expenses
- Supporting technology initiatives such as online registration, e-newsletters, websites, event calendars and support of other technological advances
- Providing the quality customer care and service necessary to manage a membership of 11,000 girls and 8,000 volunteers
- Initiating background checks of volunteers and staff to ensure the safety of girls
- Protecting girls and adults by providing liability insurance coverage for all council approved events, activities and non-Girl Scout facility use
- Subsidizing year-round turn-key outdoor experiences for girls
- Processing and placement of girls in various membership pathways
Girl Scouts sell a lot of cookies. Doesn’t that cover the cost of the Girl Scout program?
The CSF provides a source of sustainable and renewable income that supports our local Girl Scout council in a way that ensures the Girl Scout program will remain strong and viable in our local community.
Though the Girl Scouts attracts funding from a variety of sources, today’s economy supports the need for sustainable I income. Each year, the cost to provide the Girl Scout Leadership Experience is more than $250 per girl. The CSF, along with product sales, corporate and foundation support and gifts from families and friends to the Annual Giving Campaign, gives us the combined resources to raise that amount.
Politics and Religion
I’ve read a lot online about Girl Scouts having a position regarding politics and reproductive issues. What is the truth?
The truth is that Girl Scouts is a non-political organization. Our curriculum inspires girls with examples of women who take a stand for their beliefs. We are not always going to agree with the opinions on the issue, but we can agree that taking a leadership role on complex issues will create a better world.
To be clear:
- Girl Scouts does not have a relationship with Planned Parenthood.
- We do not give funds to Planned Parenthood.
- We do not receive funds from Planned Parenthood.
- We do not take a position on reproductive issues.
- We do not develop materials on the topics of sexuality, birth control, abortion or any other reproductive issue. We believe these topics are best discussed within the family.
- Girl Scouts does not endorse any person or organization.
- We do not endorse any political party or politician.
If you’re a non-political organization without a position on reproductive issues, why do I frequently see articles online that say something else?
Put simply, Girl Scouts is a powerful voice in the national and global community. As such a large organization, Girl Scouts is occasionally a target for outside entities with clear agendas. A fundamental piece you should know is that Girl Scouts does not advocate one way or another with regard to what we perceive as private issues best handled by families. Personal matters are just that—personal and private—and should be addressed accordingly.
How does Girl Scouts incorporate faith-based opportunities into its program?
Girl Scouts supports girls from all backgrounds and beliefs. While we believe the motivating force in Girl Scouting is a spiritual one., we are a secular organization that refrains from teaching religious or spiritual beliefs or practices. We are grateful for our long-standing partnerships with faith communities such as the Catholic Church, with which we hold many values in common.