Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

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March 24, 2014

Girl Scouts look to form new troops — A push is now on to get more girls in Pauls Valley and Garvin County interested in joining a familiar group that does more than just cookies.

The group is the Girl Scouts as efforts are now underway to get more girls signed up and more troops formed in this area.

Right in the middle of those efforts is Lynette Blevins, a community development executive for the Girl Scouts in this region of Oklahoma.

During a recent recruiting stop Blevins said there’s so much more to the Girl Scouts than many people may think.

“The Girl Scouts are more than just cookies,” Blevins said.

“There’s been a decline in interest in recent years,” she said. “I’m hoping to turn that around.

“We’re looking at ways we can serve the community. We want to expand membership and let the community know what the Girl Scouts are all about.

“We want to form new troops with new leaders.”

For Blevins the Scouts are about some pretty good things meant to help both the character of the girls and the community with a whole variety of projects.

“We are about the three C’s — courage, confidence and character,” Blevins said.

“If we can instill these in young girls then they can carry that on for the rest of their lives. We want to give them the tools they need to be strong adults.”

In an effort to recruit girls, or at the least better inform them and their parents about the Girl Scouts, a couple of informational booths were recently set up at two elementary schools in PV.

This looks to be a first step toward increasing the number of girls signed up to actively participate in Girl Scouts.

At the same time the hope is also to recruit some adults to volunteer their time to serve as leaders for any new Scout troops formed.

According to Blevins, this effort is needed because the numbers are low with only about six troops in Garvin County right now.

“We only have about eight to 10 girls in Pauls Valley right now,” Blevins said.

“We have maybe 35 to 40 in Garvin County as a whole.”

The low numbers here aren’t the case for other parts of the region where membership has remained stable in recent years.

“It’s not a trend in western Oklahoma, but we don’t really know why the numbers are down in Garvin County,” she said.

For those girls who do sign up there are five categories based on age.

The Daisies are for kindergarten and first grade, Brownies are second and third grades, Junior Scouts are fourth and fifth grades, Cadets are sixth through eighth grades and Ambassadors and Senior Girl Scouts are high school age girls.

Anyone interested in more information is encouraged to contact the Girl Scouts regional office in Ardmore at 405-528-GIRL (4475), extension 7974.

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