When you shell out a few bucks for a box of Girl Scout cookies, you might not realize much the proceeds from those tasty treats can go a long way for a girl with dreams.

Here are three Girl Scout troops making a difference with their cookie earnings.

The Zipper

After learning that autistic children have trouble processing information around them and are unable to regulate all their senses at once a troop from Girl Scouts of Southern Appalachians decided to put their cookie money to use by building an interactive sensory resource for children with autism in their community. 

The “Zipper”—a five-foot wooden tunnel with three thousand blue zip ties attached—was designed and built entirely by the troop of seven girls, including drilling, cutting, sanding, staining and sealing the wood for the structure, now serves as a tool for patients at the University of Tennessee’s Pediatric Language Clinic, an early intervention center and training site serving autistic children. 

Menstrual Hygiene Lockers

A troop of 5th graders from Girl Scouts of Western Ohio decided to use their cookie money to fund the installation if hygiene lockers in their middle school bathrooms. The troop's goal was to help young girls at school to feel more comfortable and confident and to fight the stigma around menstrual periods.

The troop faced an uphill battle in getting the school to agree to install the lockers, but they never gave up until the lockers were finally installed. The girls also wrote up flyers to advertise the hygiene lockers, which included an age-appropriate poem for younger girls who may not have learned about menstruation and puberty.

First Scuba Diving Troop

A Girl Scout Troop from Austin, Texas made waves last year when they opened the first underwater cookie booth at the bottom of a pool at Dive World Austin. The troop of Girl Scout divers used their earnings for trip to the Florida Keys on order to volunteer at a coral restoration facility.

This year’s cookie funds will go towards their Women’s Dive Day event in July, which the troop hosts for central Texas divers. This annual event celebrates women in diving and conservation.

—Shahrzad Warkentin

All photos: Courtesy of GSUSA



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