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Girl Scouts realign to expand reach

POSTED: April 16, 2008 5:00 a.m.
Tom Reed/The Times

Local Girl Scout members participate in the "World Thinking Day" on Feb. 16 at the Georgia Mountains Center. Girl Scouts in Georgia will be merging into fewer councils as of May 1.

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The state in which Girl Scouting was born is joining the country in a realignment that is geared toward reaching more girls.

"The reason behind that is we looked as a national organization at some brutal facts just across the country regarding Girl Scouting. And in looking at those things we found out that there really are some changes we needed to make in order to serve girls more effectively," said Cheryl Legette, executive director of the Girl Scouts of Northeast Georgia.

As of May 1, four of the councils in Georgia, including the Northeast Georgia council, will merge into the Girl Scouts of Historic Georgia. The other two councils will merge into a single council serving metro Atlanta.

While the Northeast Georgia council serves 6,500 girls in 25 counties, the new Historic Georgia council will serve some 22,000 girls in 121 counties. There are about 700 to 800 Girl Scouts in Hall County, Legette said.

According to the Historic Georgia council’s new Web site, which already has been launched, the council will include one troop in Alabama and two in South Carolina and cover most of Georgia.

Nationally, the organization will go from 310 councils to about 109. Legette said the goal is to make more resources available to a larger number of girls.

"I think what we’re talking about really has more to do with organizing ourselves in a way that we can provide girls with the most opportunities to participate in Girl Scouting and being able to maximize our resources," Legette said.



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