Local Girl Scouts make pandemic adjustments, won’t let cookie season crumble

Published: Jan. 27, 2021 at 2:21 AM CST
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - The coronavirus has stopped a lot of things, but it hasn’t kept the Girl Scouts away from their biggest annual fundraiser.

The 2021 cookie season for Girl Scouts of Central Texas started Jan. 20 and runs through Feb. 28.

Usually going door-to-door in neighborhoods or face-to-face outside of storefronts, due to COVID-19, the scouts have had to find new ways to succeed in selling the addicting sweets.

“Safety is our top priority, for the girls and for the customers,” said Melissa Green, Girl Leadership Program Lead for the Girl Scouts of Central Texas. “We’re masking up and socially-distancing at booths but we have contactless delivery, we have drive-thru booths, you can order your cookies online direct from a girl scout and you can even get them shipped to your home.”

To ensure the pandemic doesn’t win the 2021 cookie season, GSC is partnering with food delivery service Grubhub--and soon Favor--on the weekends to get people their cookie-fix.

“For the Waco, Temple, and Killeen area, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays, they can order by Grubhub and all proceeds go to the girl selling the cookies,” said Green. “When you place your order, there is a girl scout here packing the cookies and getting them together for the delivery driver, it’s all girl-run.”

Green said some scouts are also leaving-out door-hangers with their contact information so they can deliver cookies to doorsteps themselves.

“It helps them in their entrepreneurial skills as well as learning business ethics and goal-setting,” said Green of the importance of continuing with the fundraiser despite the pandemic. “We’ve never given up at Girl Scouts, we’re very strong and we keep going on, and we want to not do that (give up) during this time either.”

Michelle Johnson, an assistant troop leader in China Spring, said some girls and their families opted-out of selling cookies altogether this year.

However, for those who didn’t, it’s already been paying off, she said.

“The girls are learning so much by persevering,” said Johnson.

Not only are they learning--she says they’re already outselling last year, not just in her troop but as an entire service-area overall.

“I think people have been cooped up and they need their cookie-fix, and so they’re buying,” said Johnson.

Johnson’s daughter Sarah, 11, a fifth-grader at China Spring Intermediate, set a goal of 1,000 boxes this year: within six days, she’d sold more than 700.

“We’re trying to do the best we can with what we have,” said Sarah. “It’s not really harder, we just have to be more cautious with what we do so that we’re staying inside the guidelines.”

“If something like this happens again, we’ll be ready for it,” she said..

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