FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Girl Scouts of the USA Press Room
NEW YORK, NY (December 10, 2018)—Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) announced today that its national headquarters and 102 Girl Scout councils across the country will receive planned gifts calculated at more than $30 million, resulting from a $1.2 million Movement-wide planned giving challenge initiated by Dianne Belk and Lawrence Calder.
The Dianne Belk and Lawrence Calder Girl Scout Movement-wide Planned Giving Challenge inspired Girl Scout councils, USA Girl Scouts Overseas, and volunteers like Erik and Eva Andersen to maximize the impact of this generous gift. Throughout 2018, Girl Scout councils worked to meet the challenge by securing new planned gifts and educating their boards and volunteers about planned giving. In total, 843 new planned gifts were secured throughout the world. Each of the 102 councils that met the challenge will receive a $10,000 planned gift from Dianne Belk and Lawrence Calder and an additional $4,000 gift from Erik and Eva Andersen.
A Girl Scout alum who earned the organization’s highest award—the Girl Scout Gold Award—as a girl member, Dianne Belk is the founding chair of the Juliette Gordon Low Society, which celebrates those who have made a planned gift to Girl Scouts. As a volunteer, Dianne Belk has led the Juliette Gordon Low Society’s growth from 348 members in 2011 to almost 4,000 members in 2018. A planned gift is made through a donor’s will or estate plan. Donors who make a new planned gift commitment are welcomed by Girl Scouts to the Juliette Gordon Low Society at pinning ceremonies all over the United States and abroad. Over 600 new planned giving donors were pinned due to the challenge issued by Dianne Belk and Lawrence Calder.
“As a farm girl from very limited means and with even fewer options, Girl Scouts was my ticket to exploring the world’s opportunities,” said Dianne Belk. “I owe so much of my success to 12 years in Girl Scouts and the impact that it had on my goals, values, and character. I am so grateful. That’s why my husband and I have decided to commit our resources to helping knock down barriers that young women face in achieving equality. There is no organization in the world that is better at preparing young women to become our leaders of tomorrow than Girl Scouts. We are so proud to partner with them.”
Through the Juliette Gordon Low Society, anyone can ensure Girl Scouts will have the tools to make the world a better place for generations to come. All gifts support every girl in every zip code having access to crucial, life-changing, girl-led programming that will launch her into a lifetime of leadership.
“A planned gift is one of the most deeply personal, profoundly impactful, and truly generous gifts that a person can make,” said Sylvia Acevedo, CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA. “Thanks to the inspirational dedication, commitment, and generosity of Dianne Belk and Lawrence Calder, Girl Scouts of the USA and 102 Girl Scout councils across the country can rest assured of their financial ability to deliver one-of-a-kind Girl Scout experience to more girls in more places for generations to come. Dianne and Lawrence are truly emblematic of what it means to give back, and their efforts will inspire, uplift, and empower Girl Scouts for years to come.”
About Girl Scouts of the USA
We're 2.6 million strong—1.8 million girls and 800,000 adults who believe in the power of every G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™ to change the world. Our extraordinary journey began more than 100 years ago with the original G.I.R.L., Juliette Gordon “Daisy” Low. On March 12, 1912, in Savannah, Georgia, she organized the very first Girl Scout troop, and every year since, we’ve honored her vision and legacy, building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. We’re the preeminent leadership development organization for girls. And with programs from coast to coast and across the globe, Girl Scouts offers every girl a chance to practice a lifetime of leadership, adventure, and success. To volunteer, reconnect, donate, or join, visit www.girlscouts.org.