A Troop Leader’s Best Friend

At Girl Scouts, we’ve invested in shared tools and technology aimed at improving the volunteer and girl experience, including the Girl Scout Volunteer Toolkit (VTK): Now, troop leaders have an easy way to organize activities, plan meetings, and put girls’ ideas into action!

But don’t just take our word for it—hear from troop leaders who’ve been using VTK to jump-start their Girl Scout year!


Shoshana Stopek, Troop 2916

No more carrying heavy binders! The Volunteer Toolkit will lighten your load. It’s the resource we’ve been waiting for! In the past, we had to rely mainly on Google and Pinterest to search for badge ideas, requirements, and planning guides. The Volunteer Toolkit puts everything in one easy-to-use tool—all in one place.

Here are some of my favorite features:

  • Quickly explore badges available by gradelevel; customize by badge type (e.g., STEM).
  • Customize your year plan right in the tool itself and email it to your troop.
  • The tool is accessible to everyone registered with your troop—super convenient!
  • The Resources tab is my favorite. It features some really great links such as Meeting Aids and Meeting Overviews, as well as Safety guides (e.g., Girl to Adult ratios), and tutorial videos.
  • You can access the toolkit from your phone on the go—it’s mobile-friendly!

This toolkit is useful for any troop. On a personal note, I’m finding the tool especially great because we’re a co-op troop and we share equally in the leadership and planning. The resources within this tool are a big time-saver and empower everyone to plan, organize, and lead a badge or journey. I can definitely see this tool being expanded upon in the future; but for now, having it as a “go-to” resource is fantastic.


Christine and Tomás Romero, Troop 3326

Five tips for using the new Volunteer Toolkit:

  1. Be patient. My husband and I are fairly tech-savvy, but even we get lost in the woods sometimes when using new software programs and apps. But it is actually very easy to use if you are patient, take it slowly, and allow yourself time to explore all of the new features a bit before fully diving in.
  2. Meeting planning made easy. The new Meeting Plan feature is amazing. Not only does it allow you to map out your entire meeting schedule for the Girl Scout year in one, easily shareable place, but it also allows you to actually plan individual meetings down to the minute, from the Pledge of Allegiance to the closing friendship circle. Very cool stuff all around!
  3. One-step emailing. Another one of our favorite features in the new Volunteer Toolkit is the improved email feature. Emailing your entire troop with one email from one, easy-to-navigate home base is amazing and a real time-saver. Especially if you have a hard time keeping track of all of your parents’ email addresses.
  4. Learn together. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your fellow leaders when you need it. We bring a laptop to our meetings sometimes and have huddled around it with our co-leaders several times to make sure we all had a handle on how the Toolkit works. So a team approach to learning the new system has really helped us a lot!
  5. Track attendance. And finally, one small, but not insignificant new feature of the Toolkit is the ability to track our girls’ attendance from week to week. The fact that we can now know for sure which girls attended which meetings is invaluable, and will make it easier for us to advise parents on the badge work their girls will need to catch up. Best feature ever!

Thank you to Shoshana, Christine, and Tomás for your feedback! You can learn more about the Volunteer Tookit here, along with the rest of our new online tools.

Need help getting started? Contact us.

Want to share your Volunteer Toolkit tips and tricks? Leave a comment!

Author: Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles

Building girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s