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In 2017 Girl Scouts will recognize 100 years of selling Girl Scout cookies.
Although the cookies have changed, this year's favorites of Thin Mints, Samoas, Tagalongs, Trefoils, Do-si-dohs, Savannah Smiles and gluten-free Toffee-tastic will be available along with the new Girl Scout S'mores to celebrate the centennial.
Girls Scouts began taking orders Jan. 2 with delivery March 4 and booth sales beginning March 10. The sale ends April 2. If customers can't find a Girl Scout, they can order cookies at www.gsneo.org/cookies
Cookies also can be sent to those serving in the military through Operation: Sweet Appreciation.
In 2016 Girl Scouts from Northeast Ohio sent 58,313 packages of cookies to those serving in the military.
In 1917, five years after Juliette Gordon Low founded the organization, the Girl Scouts of Mistletoe Troop in Muskogee, Oklahoma, decided to fund their projects by selling cookies they made themselves in their kitchens at home.
The initial sale evolved into the largest entrepreneurial program in the world, teaching millions of girls essential skills needed to become effective leaders.
These leadership skills include goal setting, decision-making, money management, people skills and business ethics.
"The Girl Scout Cookie Program is essentially a business built by girls," said GSNEO's CEO Jane Christyson. "Girls who participate set goals and decide how their profits will be used to support their activities, which often include giving back through service projects. Because it's girl-led, they're learning to be effective leaders, manage finances and gain self-sufficiency and confidence in handling money."
Girl Scouts of Northeast Ohio serves 30,000 girls and 14,000 adult volunteer members in an 18-county region.
Since its founding in 1912, Girl Scouts has provided more than 50 million girls with time-honored programs that engage them with their communities; enhance self-esteem, increase financial literacy and interest in math, science and technology; encourage good health and nutrition; and build leadership skills necessary for them to move confidently into their future.
Today, Girl Scouts is the number one girl organization in the world with 2.8 million members.
Girl Scout Cookies not only help Girl Scouts earn money for fun, educational activities and community projects, but also play a huge role in transforming girls into G.I.R.L.s (Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers, Leaders) as they learn essential life skills that will stay with them forever.
In addition to activities and programs, a hallmark of the Girl Scout Cookie Program has been giving back to their communities since 1917.
Today millions of Girl Scouts sell hundreds of millions of boxes of Girl Scout Cookies to support their mission of making the world a better place.