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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 18, 2013
Girl Scouts of the USA
New York, N.Y. — Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) today released a public service announcement that features the two winners of its "Girl Scouts Speak Out: Dear Mr. President" contest, in which girls across the country were invited to make PSAs addressed to the presidential candidates telling them how they can support girls.
The professionally produced 60-second video, which was filmed in Washington, D.C., is narrated by the two Girl Scouts who submitted the winning entries: Amanda, 15, from Girl Scouts of Central Illinois, and Hareem, 14, from Girl Scouts of the Nation's Capitol. The PSA is aspirational, as the girls look to a world "that supports girls so that they reach places where big decisions are made; where one of us gets to sit where you do now."
"Girls are not hearing all the right messages. When I hear 'You're just a girl' it makes me sad," says Amanda. "'Girl Scouts Speak Out' is a really good program because girls can give their ideas and show their opinions. I think it's important for women to be in leadership positions because we need to recognize that both genders can do something to change the world. I want the President to address the diversity issue, how people aren't always accepting of race, gender, and religion. Girl Scouts has taught me a lot about accepting people."
"It (Girl Scouts Speak Out) is addressing presidential candidates," says Hareem. "The problems that are happening to girls and women today, they are not an easy topic to talk about, but they are really the moral challenge of the century. They are not unsolvable, but it takes political will—and that's what the President can do. I want to be a marine biologist as well as a female leader. Girl Scouts helps me to do that through the skills I develop in scouting. It's helped a lot in my everyday life."
The "Girl Scouts Speak Out: Dear Mr. President" contest was designed to provide a national platform for girls to engage with the presidential election. As part of the contest, girls could submit ideas and concepts for 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. The "Dear Mr. President" contest 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 provides girls with a dynamic platform for their voices to be heard and recognized on issues that are important to them, inviting them to engage in the elements of leadership and their own ability to influence their future.
"We're proud to have girls' voices on important issues such as how to help build female leaders produced into a video that shares their thoughts with a larger audience," says Eileen Doyle, Vice President for Program. "Through the 'Girl Scouts Speak Out' PSA initiative, we are inviting girls to participate in the leadership discussion on a national platform and know that their voices will be heard."
Girl Scouts has posted the video on its Web site at (speakout.girlscouts.org/finalists) and will share it broadly through social media channels and on YouTube.
Visit speakout.girlscouts.org to see the next "Girl Scouts Speak Out" PSA contest entries on bullying.
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.