Girl Scouts has been blazing the trail for girls’ leadership in the outdoors for more than a century, and our Outdoor badges (all 52 of them!) continue to be one of the most popular badge categories. So today is a big day for the Girl Scout Movement! Drumroll, please—we’re thrilled to announce a multiyear collaboration with The North Face through which girls will challenge themselves, learn about the natural world, and continue the Girl Scout tradition of having life-changing outdoor experiences.
To power the next generation of women who push boundaries and move mountains, The North Face has teamed up with us to support the development of 12 new Outdoor Adventure badges, with programming ranging from mountaineering and climbing to backpacking, hiking, and trail running. As part of Girl Scouts’ iconic outdoor experience, with The North Face’s support, Girl Scouts will introduce bold new programming that embodies both organizations’ shared mission to provide girls, regardless of socioeconomic status, with outdoor experiences that enhance their leadership skills and confidence and encourage them to seek challenges.
These 12 new badges, which will roll out over the next two years, will teach girls in virtually every U.S. zip code about the benefits of exploration as they take healthy risks, overcome fears, and revel in the beauty of the natural world. The North Face is also lending its expertise in design and tapping its network of subject matter experts to inform the badge activities.
At Girl Scouts, we believe there are never too many opportunities for girls to experience the great outdoors and all the wonder and adventure it offers. The research is clear: outdoor experiences are imperative to fostering leadership skills in girls.
And we’re the experts in this space—spending time in the outdoors is a cornerstone of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience and has been since Girl Scouts’ inception. Our all-girl environment and proven programming show girls the benefits of spending time in the world beyond walls in ways that encourage them to take healthy risks and overcome their fears.
In a 2014 study from the Girl Scout Research Institute, 72 percent of girls said they improved a skill and a third of girls said they overcame a fear through outdoor experiences in Girl Scouts. Half of the girls stated that they could not have done a particular outdoor activity (such as archery, horseback riding, or canoeing/kayaking) were it not for Girl Scouts.
Thanks to this new programming, Girl Scouts will be prepared to inspire even more G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™spirit in girls as they create their own outdoor adventures and develop crucial leadership skills, preparing them for a lifetime of exploration and success.