Girl Scouts of the USA: Leading Her to Lead

The facts are staggering:

  • 35 percent of girls ages 8-17 in the U.S. say they would not be comfortable being a leader
  • 38 percent say they are not sure they are cut out to be a leader at all
  • Four out of 10 girls say they have had no opportunities to interact with successful women during the last school year

Charged with celebrating the 100th anniversary of the iconic youth organization for girls, Girl Scouts of the USA, Edelman  knew it wanted to go above and beyond a simple membership push or a centennial celebration. Instead, it helped create ToGetHerThere – a Girl Scouts advocacy and fundraising cause to ensure balanced leadership within one generation. The effort is the largest campaign dedicated to girls’ leadership in the organization’s history.

To launch the movement, Edelman and MATTER hosted a New York event that featured a panel of female leaders, including ABC News journalist, Deborah Roberts; editor-in-chief of Marie Claire, Joanna Coles; and finance editor for NBC’s “Today Show,” Jean Chatzky. In Washington, D.C., 25 members of Congress were joined by an audience of nearly 500 at a launch event on Capitol Hill.

Edelman Digital created an interactive website, urging visitors to get informed, make their opinions known to legislators and contribute to the initiative’s goal of raising $1 billion in 10 years for the cause.

MATTER created print ads, which appeared on billboards in bus shelters, subways and airports, as well as in publications. MATTER also wrote and produced the radio ads for the campaign. Edelman worked with crowdsourced video company Poptent to create television public service announcements (below and additional one here). To reach a broader audience, all materials were translated into Spanish.

“This is a critically important initiative for girls all across the country, not just Girl Scouts,” said journalist Katie Couric in an interview on “Good Morning America.”

So far, the campaign has raised awareness of the Girl Scouts’ vision for girls’ leadership and triggered memorable moments, including 11 of the 17 female U.S. Senators who were former Girl Scouts assembling on Capitol Hill, and congresswoman Loretta Sanchez wiping away a tear while relating that as the young daughter of Mexican parents, she made her first friends after joining the Girl Scouts.

Additionally, media coverage generated 760 million impressions; the website sparked 180,000 visits and nearly 8,000 advocacy actions; the Facebook page drew more than 4,000 “likes;” and the Twitter handle gained over 1,000 followers.

Importantly, the campaign has just begun. Watch this space.

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