100 Years of Girl Scout Cookies in Lousiana

16:38 December 14, 2016
By: Anthony O'Donnell

The Girl Scouts, founded by Juliette Gordon Low in 1912, have always worked to instill important values in the young women who participate in their program. Ignoring contemporary rhetoric that relegated women to domestic pursuits and childrearing, Low and her fellow Scout leaders sought to teach them practical skills like camping and first aid. But the organization doesn’t receive enough credit for pushing young ladies to pursue a particular skill, one that gender norms in the early 1900’s particularly discouraged women from engaging in: entrepreneurship.

One hundred years ago, only five years after the founding of the group, they started the project they’re perhaps best known for: the sale of Girl Scout Cookies, the wildly popular treats that Scouts sell door-to-door. While they’ve since established partnerships with national bakers to produce their cookies, for many years, the Scouts
baked their products themselves, going door to door with their handmade confections and quickly making a name for their energetic commitment to their homegrown business. The cookie booth soon rivaled the lemonade stand as an emblem of childhood enterprise.

Since then, the Girls Scouts of the United States of America have grown to become the eighth largest nonprofit/charity organization in America, and girls who started their business careers hawking Thin Mints, Samosas, and Peanut Butter Sandwiches have gone on to great things. Out of Girl Scout alumnae who went into business, 57 percent credit the program with developing the skills they now use as entrepreneurs and businesswomen.

“Our customers know that by purchasing Girl Scout cookies they are helping girls to fulfill their dreams, follow their passions, and change the world,” said Alisha Moore of Girl Scouts Louisiana East. To celebrate the 100th anniversary, Moore says girls at booth locations throughout the Louisiana East council’s 23 parishes will be selling a
new S’mores cookie, based on a recipe from 1927. The S’mores cookie is vegan and free of artificial colors, and joins a list of eight other delightful cookies, all priced around four dollars a box. All proceeds are used for the council’s troop activities, as well as maintaining property and recruiting volunteers. Those interested in more information can call the council office in New Orleans at 504-733-8220 or visit its website at www.gsle.org.

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