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Girls build character and skills in Girl Scouts

Girl Scouts is the world's pre-eminent organization dedicated solely to girls — all girls — where, in an accepting and nurturing environment, girls build character and skills for success in the real world. In partnership with committed adults, girls develop qualities that will serve them all their lives such as strong values, a social conscience and a conviction about their own potential and self-worth. In Girl Scouts, girls discover the fun, friendship and power of girls together. Through the many enriching experiences provided by Girl Scouting, they grow courageous and strong.

During Girl Scout Week, March 11-17, Girl Scouts from all over Utah — and the nation — will celebrate the anniversary of the organization's founding 89 years ago. With the same dedication that the 18 initial Girl Scout members had in 1912, local girls will participate in activities that celebrate the fun and friendship that Girl Scouting provides. The 3.6 million members in the organization today continue to move forward with the founder's vision of helping girls everywhere grow strong.

From nature walks and learning Morse code in the beginning of the 20th century, to meeting with members of Congress and developing Web sites in the year 2001, Girl Scouts has always been in step with the times. Traditional activities to commemorate the Girl Scout heritage will take place nationwide, with girls performing community service projects, wearing uniforms to school and in houses of worship, holding birthday celebrations and much more.

In Salt Lake City, Girl Scouts will take part in these festivities by learning about other cultures and countries, performing service projects and participating in Salt Lake City's St. Patrick's Day Parade — and yes, we'll be wearing green!

As we celebrate the founding of Girl Scouts, we continue to commit ourselves to providing girls with a place where they can develop qualities of character, conduct and community service and in the process grow into tomorrow's leaders. While the values that were synonymous with Girl Scouting in the beginning of the 20th century still hold true today, we continue to evolve with a program that works best for girls in the 21st century.

March 12, 1912, marked the beginning of an organization that for almost nine dec—ades has helped girls grow strong. Foun—der Juliette Gordon Low's vision of bringing something "special to girls of America and the world" culminated in the founding of the Girl Scouts, where girls throughout the nation develop physically, mentally and spiritually.

Girl Scouts. Where Girls Grow Strong.

Sharon Stetz is the chief executive officer of Girl Scouts of Utah.