July 27, 2015

Whales, Tales and Trails Destination

Last week, Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts hosted 24 girls from all over the country for our Whales, Tales and Trails Destination program. Several of the girls are from within our council and represented towns such as Carver, Methuen, Lawrence and Lexington. Many of the girls who came from out of state had never been to New England before this visit!

During the program, the girls were able to improve their writing skills while learning about New England history and culture. Endicott College in Beverly was home base for the week, giving the girls a sneak peek at college campus living.

The Destination began with a flag ceremony featuring local Girl Scouts in vintage Girl Scout uniforms. Pat Parcellin, GSEM’s CEO, and Elizabeth Stevenson, GSEM’s Board Chair, welcomed the girls to Massachusetts

The group had the chance to work with local female authors Hank Phillippi Ryan, Kristine Asselin and Edith M. Maxwell to improve their writing skills.

The girls learned about 
Louisa May Alcott, the late author and role model whose novel “Little Women” is as beloved by girls today as it was when it was published in two volumes in the late 1860s. While visiting the Alcott home in Concord, called Orchard House, the girls took time to write in their journals about the experience, and some girls were interviewed by a local reporter.

The group explored the New England coastline by visiting Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and by going on a whale watch out of Gloucester. 

                                       The group then got to discover Salem during a scavenger hunt
Boston through a Duck Tour.


Every Destination includes an opportunity for girls to give back, and our girls wrapped up their busy week by working on a service project at the Beverly School for the Deaf.

We are already missing this awesome group of girls! We can’t wait to see the amazing stories they write after all of their adventures.

July 23, 2015

In the News: Girl Scouts Going for the Gold

Our Girl Scouts’ efforts to bring real, sustainable change to their communities are being recognized! This past year, 70 girls across eastern Massachusetts earned the highest award attainable in Girl Scouting—the Gold Award.

Each girl chose an issue, created a plan to take action, and inspired others along the way. Girls typically spend 80 hours over one to two years on their Gold Award projects, and are able to sustain them through the work of other troops or volunteers. More than 30 local newspapers have highlighted our girls through articles and photos.

A Golden Ceremony
On Monday, June 15, our Gold Awardees were honored at the Massachusetts State House. Girls who were recognized for Bridging to Adult also participated in this memorable celebration. In addition to remarks from GSEM Chief Executive Officer Patricia Parcellin and Council President Elizabeth Stevenson, State Auditor Suzanne Bump addressed the audience of girls, parents, troop volunteers and council board members. All the girls received a certificate and a rose from the council, along with local and national certificates of commendation. 

Girls Making Headlines
Sagamore Girl Scout Lazara Wilson earned the Gold Award with her project Mural of Inspiration for RFK. She felt that the dreary exterior of the Robert F. Kennedy Children’s Action Corps Center in her community did not reflect the organization’s spirit. Lazara designed a mural to enhance what was once a plain white wall, using her own artistic talents and giving the kids an opportunity to make a difference at the center that does so much for them and the community.

Youssr Attia, from Randolph, earned the Gold Award as well as the GSEM scholarship this year. Her project, WEmpower, set out to empower girls and women, physically and mentally. Inspired by her own passion for martial arts, she created a series of workshops and self-defense classes. Each workshop addressed the root causes of low self-esteem and revolved around a self-empowerment theme. Her efforts are what led her to receive her scholarship, which she will use to study chemical engineering at Northeastern University.

Topsfield’s Chiffer family is going gold! All three Chiffer sisters are Girl Scouts, and the two oldest girls have each earned their Gold Award. Elizabeth Chiffer completed her project, French Immersion through the Arts, this year. She set out to help students in the fourth through sixth grades learn the language and the culture of France by developing and leading a series of French language and cultural classes using visual, performing and culinary arts to engage her students.

Wakefield Girl Scout Caitlin Mogan has always loved to read, but felt that a lack of time to read for pleasure outside of school contributed to many of her friends’ loss of passion for books. As part of her project, Reversing Readicide, Caitlin collected books and created a library at the local Boys & Girls Club to give middle school students the opportunity to read books that genuinely interested them and revive their love of reading.

Stay tuned for more Gold Award spotlights!  

Photography by Randy H. Goodman

April 17, 2015

GSEM in the News: February and March

Our Girl Scouts are making headlines! Read on to see what they've been up to lately.


Cookies for a Cause

To cap off the cookie season, nearly 1,000 girls, families and volunteers gathered at Hanscom Air Force Base on March 21 to donate 30,000 packages of cookies as part of the Cookies for a Cause program. 

We’re very appreciative of our military troops, and hope that they enjoyed our tasty message of “Thanks-A-Lot!” 

CBS Boston highlighted this great accomplishment – listen and read more here.

Good Morning Boston!

Girl Scouts were invited to be on "Good Morning America" when the show was broadcast from Boston on March 11

During the Frozen-themed “Coolest Summer Ever” segment, girls enjoyed sweet treats, met Olaf, that infamous snowman, and represented GSEM! See more photos here.

Leading Women Awards

Our Leading Women event was a shining success!

We honored Martha Coakley the Former Attorney General of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts; Christa Hagearty, president and chief executive officer of Dependable Cleaners; Dr. Denise Hammon, president of Marian Court College; Elaine Steward, vice president and club counsel of the Boston Red Sox; and Janet Wu, anchor/reporter at 7News/CW56. Each Leading Woman received stories in her hometown newspapers and Boston Business Journal highlighted the event in their Out Of Office section.

STEM Conference and Expo

Photo from the MetroWest Daily News
On March 15, GSEM hosted our annual STEM conference in Framingham. 

It was a day filled with activities, including hands-on experiments, live demonstrations, and conversations with women in the STEM fields. A number of Wicked Local websites featured a pre-event article (with 1.2 million impressions), and The MetroWest Daily News article published after the event featured several girls inspired to learn more about STEM.

GSEM CEO Patricia Parcellin featured in Boston Business Journal
Photo from Boston Business Journal
In an Executive Profile, Pat Parcellin shared her vision for the council's future and discussed her transition from financial services to the nonprofit world. 

In her first six months at the council, Pat has been focused on girl leadership,building stronger connections with the corporate community, investing in properties, increasing and diversifying membership, and engaging more adult volunteers.

Be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram to see what we do next!

March 25, 2015

Winter Roundup

Our Girl Scout troops have done some awesome things over the past four months. From the Cape and Islands to the border of New Hampshire, it’ safe to say girls across eastern Massachusetts are smart, strong and brave.

While they sold cookies by the hundreds and shoveled snow by the foot, these troops still made time to help their communities and have fun. Learn what they've been up to this winter -- it goes beyond the cookie box! -- and keep up with us by following #TroopTuesday on Facebook and Twitter.

With the help of EMTs from Tufts EMS, Medford Brownie Troop 68137 earned their First Aid badge. The girls learned how and when to call 911, put together a troop first aid kit, and how to splint a wrist or arm if injured while hiking.

Avon/Holbrook Brownie Troop 88208 visited the Holbrook Police and Fire Department to say, "Thanks-a-Lot!" They brought along cookies, gratitude and smiles for all.

Girls from North End Troop 69168 made donations to Cradles to Crayons, which supplies children in need with the essentials to thrive.

Rochester Daisy Troop 69067 and Brownie Troop 76117 worked together with their school to collect essentials such as soap, dental care products and socks to donate to a local women's shelter during the holiday season.

 GSEM’s Green Arrow Junior Olympic Archery Development (JOAD) Club attended the Kids Only Tournament. 

GSEM's JOAD club is composed of Cadettes, Seniors and Ambassadors from nine towns  – Framingham, Manchester, Melrose, Medford, West Bridgewater, Waltham, Belmont, Malden and Hopkinton – and four of our Girl Scouts received medals. Way to go, ladies! (Thanks Riley McCarthy for the photos!)

Local girls made an appearance on Good Morning America at Boston's Faneuil Hall, helping to launch the "Coolest Summer Ever" with Olaf from Frozen. See more pictures here!

February 2, 2015

You're Appreciated: Recognizing Volunteer Achievements

Chelmsford Girl Scouts lead the flag ceremony

Every year, Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts holds the Volunteer Recognition Dinner to honor those in the community who have gone above and beyond what it means to be a Girl Scout volunteer. 

These volunteers provide support for each other, leadership opportunities for girls, and strengthen our communities.

Last year, 43 volunteers, three service units and two committees were recognized for their commitment and dedication to Girl Scouting.

Thanks Badge Awardee Sarah Leshay and Bedford Girl Scouts

Read on to learn more about each award and how you can nominate a volunteer who shines bright in your Girl Scout community:

January 30, 2015

GSEM in the News

So many wonderful activities going on across our council. Read on to learn more:


Cookie Creations Boston was featured in The Boston Globe and on Boston.com, showcasing the chefs, judges and attendees at this fun night out. Cookie Creations Danvers has also been in the news

Our CEO Pat Parcellin has been raising awareness for the cookie program and the essential skills our girls develop from participating. See her recent interview with Jenny Johnson of Comcast Newsmakers and with the Groton Channel News -- tune in at the 13-minute mark.

Hailey Manduca, a 2015 Gold Awardee, earned the highest award in Girl Scouting by creating a documentary, “Unbreakable Spirit,” to showcase her struggle with brittle bone disease in an effort to help those going through similar treatments and experiences. She continues to be highlighted in the press.

In mid-January, Revere Girl Scouts were featured in the Revere Journal for their (surprise!) visit with Governor Charlie Baker at the State House.


KISS108 ran a Girl Scout Cookie ad campaign featuring Kendra Petrone, letting listeners know about the cookie sale. Kendra was even a Guest Judge at Cookie Creations Boston!

Have you seen our cookie ads around eastern Mass.? From taxi tops, to commuter rail and T stations, MBTA buses, Improper Bostonian, The Boston Globe, office building elevators and lobby screens, and more, our ad campaign is running where cookie lovers will see it, generating business for our girls. We are grateful to our media partners who donated ad space to make this possible.

Within the next few weeks you'll see the council's new ride traveling highways and back-roads as it crisscrosses eastern Massachusetts raising visibility for the cookie program and supporting girls at booth sales. The vehicle is more than a traveling billboard; it will move cookies to where they are needed, stop at girl and adult volunteer recruitment events, and serve as a mobile shop. We will run a contest for our audience to spot the wheels on the road to win a case of cookies – stay tuned!

Be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram to keep up with all things Girl Scout Cookies!

January 23, 2015

Whip up your own Cookie Creations!

Due to weather, Cookie Creations Danvers will be rescheduled to February 5, 2015. It's still being held at the Danversport Yacht Club at 6pm. See you there! Buy tickets here.

Girl Scout Cookie season means sharing your favorite sweet treats with family and friends. Delectable Caramel deLites, scrumptious Peanut Butter Patties or even our new certified gluten-free offering, Trios, available now!

On January 15, chefs from Greater Boston gathered at the Back Bay Events Center for Cookie Creations. They created mouth-watering delicacies--desserts, savory snacks, even chocolate bacon--and the best part is, each dish was made using your favorite Girl Scout Cookies! 

Guest judges Kendra Petrone of Kiss108's Matty in the Morning, instructors from Le Cordon Bleu Culinary College and Maggie Battista, founder of Eat Boutique, ranked the treats on taste and presentation.

Chefs sampling each other's creations! Yum!
Executive Pastry Chef Brian Mercury of Harvest in Cambridge won "Best Overall" with his Thin Mint & Rice Krispies Treat Torte. His enticing presentation matched the deliciousness factor of this incredible dish!

Chef Brian Mercury with his distinctively delicious Thin Mint & Rice Krispies Treat Torte!

Last year's "Best Overall" winner, Chef Eunice Heller, owner and chef at Bread & Chocolate Bakery CafĂ© in Newton, continued to be a crowd-pleaser. Her "All for Her" Lemon Risotto won the "Crowd Favorite" award and using Lemonades cookies, you too can create this yummy, savory dish. 

Chef Eunice Heller with her "All for Her" Lemon Risotto. It was divine!

Below are some of these innovative recipes, straight from the chefs themselves. Have an adult help you create these tasty treats and share your cookie creations with us on FacebookTwitter or Instagram!

Cookie Creations Danvers is on February 5 at the Danversport Yacht Club, and we hope to see you there! Buy tickets here.
The guest judges with GSEM CEO Pat Parcellin (center) at Cookie Creations Boston on January 15, 2015.

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