Radiation Therapist, Becky Joseph, had a late start joining the Girl Scouts, her 5th grade experience was too brief and she regretted not joining sooner. As an adult, she’s gotten a second chance by leading her daughter’s troop.
Joseph has been a Troop Leader for her daughter, Claire, since she was in 3rd grade. When her other daughter, Andie, joined the Girl Scouts in Kindergarten, Joseph became her Troop Leader as well, and has been leading the same pack of girls ever since, for a total of 7 years.
“[Girl Scouts] allows anyone to be involved, no matter how they do in school [or] sports,” said Joseph. “It lets them be a little more silly and be themselves. I like that they can earn confidence and friendships with girls they wouldn't necessary meet at school.”
Joseph is responsible for organizing and implementing Troop activities, crafts, and field trips. Over the years she has come up with ideas for everything from snack lists to party themes. One thing she has overseen is the weekly cooking the girl’s do for their Sunday Meetings. They have also provided treats for Hebron’s Halloween Movie in the Park and even had a sleepover where they spent the night redesigning dresses that Joseph bought for them at a Goodwill.
Girl Scouts encompasses a variety of skills and interests, Joseph’s youngest daughter enjoys crafts, sleepovers, and cooking the most.
Sometimes, their activities impact the community around them. Troop 30314 has raised donations for Hurricane Harvey, donated supplies to a NICU, had a food drive for a food pantry, visited the elderly for Carols and gift-giving at Christmas, bought presents for Toys for Tots, and grew produce in a community garden. It is a tradition for them to celebrate World Thinking Day by learning about how other Girl Scouts live in other countries in order to improve the world, starting with Hebron.
Becky started her term as Troop Leader by conducting many of the meetings and activities herself. Now, the girls do much on their own, and she acts as a guide, hoping to leave even more responsibility in the hands of her very able team.
Their biggest achievement as a Troop was the renovation of the gazebo in Alyea Park.
“I think in my personal troop, I always try to think of a service oriented goal for the girls. I try to get them involved in many things and helping many people. I am instilling in them the kindness of helping anyone who needs help. We have given back a lot to the community. I also have fun with them too, so it's a nice balance of fun and work,” said Joseph.
The gazebo was vandalized and in need of repairs so the town wanted to tear down. Troop 30314 spoke up at a town meeting in defense of the gazebo, and proposed a renovation instead. They were given permission by Town Hall and the Parks Department they even went to the Hebron Redevelopment Commission seeking funds.
The rest of the money they raised via their booth at the Hebron Block Party. They made crafts, snacks, and slime to sell, raising enough money to buy new stain for the gazebo, mulch to frame it, and flowers to spruce up its beds; doing all the work themselves.
Some of the girls put in the twenty hours necessary to earn the Bronze Award through the Junior Scouts, with all of them earning the “Friend of the Park” award from the Hebron Parks Department.
The Troop’s contribution to the Hebron Park is especially personal for Joseph, since she is the volunteer President of the Hebron Parks Department. While living in Valparaiso, she fell in love with the parks and wanted the same for Hebron. Our entire region has natural resources to be proud of such as the Dunes and the zoo, and she has been working on adding to that reputation within her own town.
All this while, Joseph has been earning an online degree through Indiana University and working as a Radiation Therapist for Dermatology Centers of NWI. Her Girl Scout troop has a role model that knows how to multitask and they can see firsthand what it means to put others before self.
“[Andie] has built some really awesome friendships, learned a lot of things, increased her self-esteem, and learned some life skills. [The Troop] learned a lot even selling cookies at the Casey's gas station, I was surprised how much I had to really work with them to talk to customers, make change, and be thankful. It's something we take for granted, but they need to be taught how to do those basic skills. I enjoy getting to see the girls together and make sure everyone is welcome and developing in some way.”