Girl Scouts of New Mexico Trails is introducing a Council Service Fee (CSF), effective with the 2016-2017 membership year. This $15 fee will help generate funds dedicated to providing the Girl Scout Leadership Experience to GSNMT Girl Scouts.
The purpose of the CSF is to provide our council with a sustainable renewal source of income that supports its operation, including general operating expenses, supporting technology initiatives, providing quality customer care and services to members, initiating background checks of volunteers and staff, providing liability insurance, providing outdoor experiences for girls and processing of girl memberships. These funds will ensure that the Girl Scout program remains strong and viable in our local community.
How the Fee will Work
Girl membership dues will be $30 effective with the 2016-2017 (October 1, 2016-September 30, 2017) membership year. Parents will continue to make a convenient single payment for girl membership dues.
$15 Girl Scouts USA Membership Fee (supports nationwide program initiatives, goes directly to our national office, GSUSA)
+ $15 GSNMT Council Service Fee (Supports local Girl Scouts, here in our council! Supports programs and services to GSNMT girls)
$30 Total GSNMT Council Girl Scout Membership
Members currently pay annual membership dues ($15) which go directly to the national Girl Scouts of the USA. None of those annual membership dues stays locally. Each year, the cost to provide the Girl Scout experience is $340.72 per girl.
The $15 CSF supports the operation of our local Girl Scout Council the same way the $15 national membership dues support the operation of GSUSA. Girl Scout volunteer delegates from across the country overwhelmingly approved the use of a Council Service Fee at the 52nd GSUSA National Council Session in November 2011. The delegates recognized the financial realities of operating a Girl Scout Council in today’s economy and felt strongly that adding the CSF was necessary given the substantial value of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.
After careful consideration (Board of Directors, CSF Task Group Committee comprised of GSNMT volunteers, and through a survey to the membership), the decision was made to implement the CSF in our council and provide an additional resource to help meet programming needs and offset the increasing cost of providing wide-ranging opportunities in our communities.
Our Council heavily subsidizes the cost of girl activities, events, adult leadership development, and Council-sponsored programs. Here are some of the ways the CSF will support the operation of New Mexico Trails:
- Provide programs and leadership experiences for our Girl Scouts
- Create GSNMT programs and opportunities such as Camp CEO
- Ensure the safety of girls by subsidizing annual background checks of volunteers and staff
- Provide outstanding customer care and service to manage and support our growing membership of 3,300+ girls and 1,900+ adult volunteers
- Fund general operating expenses for service centers and camps including utilities, insurance, maintenance, and capital expenses
- Support technology initiatives including online registration, e-newsletters, websites, event calendars, social media and support development of emerging technological opportunities
- Protect girls and adults by providing liability insurance coverage for all council-approved events, activities, and non-Girl Scout facility use for council events, troop meetings, and approved events.
- Subsidize travel experiences for girls including destinations
GSNMT receives funding from a variety of sources including product sales, grants, and donations. However, today’s economy underscores the critical need for sustainable income. The CSF will help provide the additional resources required to deliver the premier leadership program for girls. While we are reluctant to raise fees, we are confident this new fee structure will have an immediate positive impact on Girl Scouting in GSNMT. We are sensitive to the needs of all families and no girl will be turned away due to the inability to pay.
Girl Scouts delivers the programs that girls and their parents are asking for—and it’s delivered at a price still much more affordable than most youth activities. We owe it to our girls to give them the opportunity to be the leaders they want to be; to be the leaders the world needs them to be!