Flamingos flock to raise funds for Girl Scout trip
By Nance Ebert, Contributing Writer
Westborough – The girls from Troop 30555 are in the midst of a fundraising effort with the hopes of going to Costa Rica. Their troop leaders, Julie Baldwin, Nancy Wright and Bryna Dudek, along with the girls are all coming together to help this dream become a reality.
One of the ways in which they are raising money is by “flocking” neighborhood lawns with pink flamingos.
“We initially bought 36 flamingos and then added 36 more. [Now] we have over 100. This is a really fun way to help raise funds. People call or email me to order and the cost depends on the number of flamingos requested. It costs $10 per dozen and signage can also be ordered for an additional $10,” Baldwin explained.
The girls set up the flamingos on the lawn of the person or family being “flocked” after dark. The flamingos remain there for 24 hours and are then collected. As many as 50 flamingos have “flocked” a lawn at one time.
Baldwin has four daughters. Her eldest, Margaret, a high school junior, went with Troop 30635 to Costa Rica last year. Having had a wonderful experience, her younger daughter, Katherine, a sophomore, is hoping to follow suit. Seventh-grader Elizabeth and sixth-grader Caroline will have to wait patiently for their turn.
“I have been involved with the Girl Scouts for the past 11 years,” Baldwin said. “There aren’t a lot of women who will take girls camping and give them an outdoor experience. When Juliet Low founded the Girl Scouts of the USA, she really wanted girls to learn how to camp, build fires, backpack and more.”
When the girls start as a Daisy, there is much discussion about going on a big trip when they are older. They have to raise the money and are given an opportunity to give input for the itinerary. Last April was the first trip to Costa Rica. It was such a huge success that the fundraising efforts for next year’s trip have gotten off to a great start with two of the girls already reaching their monetary goal.
“The Girl Scouts have a history of going to trips in Costa Rica. Last year’s trip was nine days long and we had a great group of guides from Outward Bound leading us in activities like white water rafting,” she said. “Each day, we rotated leadership roles so that every girl had an opportunity to cook, be the recorder, the first aider and more.”
The experiences that each participant has can be invaluable if not life changing. Christina Buffo, who went on the trip last year could not agree more.
“I enjoyed pretty much everything we did,” she said. “We were able to do so many things that we could not do in Westborough, like surfing, zip lining and white water rafting, which were all really fun. I learned how to cook, surf and barter while only speaking the bare minimum of Spanish. You learn a lot of things about yourself and help out some other people as well.”
Anyone interested in “flocking” should contact Julie Baldwin at 508-366-9463 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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