Letter: How Girl Scouts can help with mental health

From: Danielle Shockey, CEO, Girl Scouts of Central Indiana


Even though Mental Health Month has ended, that doesn’t mean it’s time to stop bringing awareness to the challenges our young people are facing, and more importantly, how Girl Scouts can help.

The following quotes come from Girl Scouts in a mental health focus group conducted by the Girl Scout Research Institute in 2020.

“Because of Girl Scouts, I’ve had a community and a safe place to be myself.”

“Girl Scouts has been helpful to my mental health because of the meaningful connections and relationships I have been able to form, and continue to form, with my sister Girl Scouts.”

“Girl Scouts has taught me to be self-confident, which is very good for my mental health. I have learned to be brave when trying new things, which reduces anxiety I might have had when put in new or uncomfortable situations.”

Scientists have found certain activities may lift your mood, calm you down when you’re stressed, and help you face challenges — these include being outside, trying new things, having something to look forward to, and having strong social connections. These are all key components of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

So, I implore you, if you know a girl aged 5-18, encourage her to join Girl Scouts at www.girlscoutsindiana.org/join. Her mental health may depend on it. In Girl Scouts, rather than feeling sad, girls feel supported, and rather than helpless, girls find happiness.