Camps being taken from disadvantaged Girl Scouts!

Camps being taken from disadvantaged Girl Scouts!

September 2, 2022
Petition to
CEO, Girl Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay Claudia Peña Porretti
Signatures: 901Next Goal: 1,000
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Why this petition matters

Started by K Wickham

Save our camps!

Girl Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay announced August 30, 2022 their intent to sell 4 properties including Camp Grove Point in Earleville, MD and Camp Sandy Pines in Fruitland, MD. Additionally, they will be selling their Northern and Southern Program Centers in Newark, DE and Salisbury, MD. If these Camps are sold, that will leave 2 camp properties: Camp Country Center in Hockessin, DE and Camp Todd in Denton, MD.

Girl Scouts in the Girl Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay which encompasses the entire Delmarva peninsula from Delaware, Eastern half of Maryland and the coast of Virginia are struggling - to retain girls and volunteers, to find meeting places, to hold outdoor events, and to find locations for outdoor skill building and low cost, safe camping. Additionally, Adult Girl Scouts in these same areas need outdoor training and these camp properties are where that occurs.

Despite the fact that socio-economic disparities are prevalent within our council – most council resources go to the Girl Scouts properties located in more affluent areas of our council. These resources that Council leadership is supposed to use wisely in order to maintain these properties and offer age-appropriate programming among other things are earned through the sales of cookies and fall products sold by the Girl Scouts in troops across the Delmarva Peninsula. These resources and camp properties belong to our girls! Asking families and volunteers, many who are already struggling financially, to travel an over an hour or more to get to Girl Scout owned spaces, is unconscionable.

We don't need more excuses or justifications. We've heard them all before - for years, now. We have often asked about the existence of alleged financial issues which Council now says are the reasons they must divest of these properties. However, we were routinely told that there was nothing to worry about or we have just been ignored as have our camp properties. Council leadership and the Board have been less than transparent about these financial issues and communication from Council on the financial issues has been hit or miss at best. Many of the Service Unit Leaders and Volunteers in our Council didn’t even receive the email from our CEO. They received word of the sale through other Volunteers. The sale of our camps cannot stand!

Additionally, there is an environmental impact concern and nature conversation issues to contend with regarding the sale of these properties. At Camp Grove Point, there are endangered species of Puritan Tiger Beetles and Bog Turtles that inhabit portions of the camp. If these Camps are sold and later developed, these endangered species are at risk. So, too, is the quality of the environment in the predominantly rural town of Earleville where the camp is located.

We want our camps to remain in our communities where we will be able to share them with all Girl Scouts now and in the future. These camps are where we teach girls to develop outdoor and water skills, explore STEAM activities, and fall in love with nature and community service. Now more than ever, it is imperative that we are given the authority to do what is needed to keep it accessible and usable for our girls.

As Girl Scouts, we have pledged to follow the Girl Scout Promise to honorably serve God* and our country, to help people at all times, and live by the Girl Scout Law. (*Members may substitute for the word God in accordance with their own spiritual beliefs.) In our membership and service to our country and our communities, we live by the Girl Scout Law which calls upon us to do our best to be honest and fair, friendly and helpful, considerate and caring, courageous and strong, and responsible for what we say and do, and to respect ourselves and others, respect authority, use resources wisely, make the world a better place, and be a sister to every Girl Scout. The way things have been handled by Council is not fully aligned with these foundational concepts of Girl Scouting.

We are asking that the sale of these camps be halted and the land or either remain as green space, that our Council finances be fully investigated and are fully briefed in every detail to all members of our council, and that if any mismanagement of funds is found, that the parties responsible are held accountable to the fullest extent of law.

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Signatures: 901Next Goal: 1,000
Support now

Decision Makers

  • Claudia Peña PorrettiCEO, Girl Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay