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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 15, 2012
New York, N.Y. — Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) announced today that Hareem, a Girl Scout from Sterling, Va., and Amanda, a Girl Scout from Normal, Ill., are the winners of the "Dear Mr. President Girls Scouts Speak Out" contest. The winners will have their work made into a professional public service announcement (PSA) to be released in January.
The contest invited girls across the country to make PSAs addressed to the presidential candidates telling them how to support girls and the next generation of leaders. Girls submitted videos, slide shows and other material that drew more than 10,000 votes. 'Dear Mr. President' is part of the "Girl Scouts Speak Out" series in which GSUSA asks girls to submit PSAs on key national or global issues. The program helps girls to understand the elements of leadership and their own ability to influence their future. To view finalists, go to http://speakout.girlscouts.org/finalists/.
"I've had the opportunity to do so much with Girl Scouts," says Hareem, 14, who is a member of the Girl Scouts of the Nation's Capital. "It's been very exciting. I think that girls should be able to tell the President what we need from him. Girls are important in that they are the future of this country. So many of us have so much to offer, but we still need support, Mr. President."
"I'm so excited to win the 'Girl Scouts Speak Out' contest!" says Amanda, 15, a member of the Girl Scouts of Central Illinois. "I think the PSA contests are a great way to encourage girls to express their opinions on important issues in our world. They prove that while we may be young, we are aware of the things happening around us. We have ideas and thoughts that can influence people, and I think it's great that we can show that!"
Hareem's PSA, titled "Girl Scouts of the USA, Celebrating 100 Years of Girls Leadership," was the top vote-getter with 3,465 votes. Her submission focused on the importance of the nation's need for leadership, the great things girls have to offer, and called on the president to support girls.
Amanda's PSA focuses on the country's diversity and the need for tolerance. In an artwork, Amanda uses script and graphics to create positive imagery around tolerance and inclusion, set against a graduated color scheme representing the different levels of Girl Scouts.
"Through 'Girl Scouts Speak Out,' we want to provide girls with a platform where they could make their voice heard on issues important to them," says Alison Granito, Senior Editor, Digital Program Content, Girl Scouts of the USA. "Whatever their views may be, our greatest hope is that girls speak up and have a voice in determining their own future. Girls told the presidential candidates they care about a range of issues, from bullying, to the need for strong mentors, support for small businesses and equal pay. We're excited to work on the final PSA concept with our winners, Hareem and Amanda."
About Girl Scouts of the USA
Founded in 1912, Girl Scouts of the USA is the preeminent leadership development organization for girls, with 3.2 million girl and adult members worldwide. Girl Scouts is the leading authority on girls' healthy development, and builds girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. The organization serves girls from every corner of the United States and its territories. Girl Scouts of the USA also serves American girls and their classmates attending American or international schools overseas in 90 countries. For more information on how to join, volunteer or reconnect with, or donate to Girl Scouts, call 800-GSUSA-4-U or visit www.girlscouts.org.