Friday, June 15, 2012

Do-Dads play a positive role in a Girl Scout’s experience? Absolutely.

Blake Trahan with his Daisy troop.
For 100 years, Girl Scouts has built girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place. It has provided opportunities for girls to bond with their mothers over campfires, service projects and award ceremonies. While Girl Scouts is a tradition mothers often pass on to their daughters, the pivotal role fathers play in shaping and influencing their daughters’ development and leadership potential is often overlooked. They too find joy in seeing girls succeed and Girl Scouts finds joy in making Do-dads – adult male volunteers who are mostly fathers – an integral part of its program.

In the Memorial area, Blake Trahan leads a Girl Scout Daisy troop of 5 and 6-year-olds. He remembers the day he decided to serve as a Girl Scout volunteer. He attended a membership rally at Wilchester Elementary School to enroll his daughter and learned about the endless leadership opportunities Girl Scouts offers girls. At the conclusion of the presentation, he was certain that he had made the right decision to register his daughter. Then there was a call to action that he wasn’t prepared to answer. The presenter asked for Girl Scout volunteers.

“Nobody raised their hand at the meeting,” said Trahan. “My mind began to race, and then it happened. I raised my hand to volunteer. My only regret is that I didn’t raise it sooner.”

Trahan wanted to be part of his daughter’s scouting experience and enjoys being a part of 11 other girls’ experiences too. With just a bit of planning, thanks in part to the tools provided by the San Jacinto Council, Trahan delivers captivating meetings in a fun and safe environment.

“Once you see the pride of a girl who just learned the promise or completed a craft,  hear the laughter of the group when singing silly Girl Scout songs, or see the confidence these young girls show, your volunteering seems effortless,” said Trahan.

According to Trahan, the perks of volunteering as his daughter’s troop leader go beyond allowing him to bond with his daughter in programs designed for her. Serving as troop leader gives him the opportunity to develop relationships with the parents of his daughter’s peers. Girl Scouts provides a great support system for parents.

“I have made friends with some great people who are going through the same life challenges that I face [as a parent],” said Trahan. “These girls are going to be together for many years to come and [Girl Scouts] provides a great way to get know their families, too.”

First-time volunteer, Clinton Colby of Kingwood was inspired by his father to serve as a Girl Scout volunteer.

“My father is so close to my sister and I want the same relationship with my daughter,” said Colby.

Clinton took a chance and volunteered without knowing if fathers could lead a troop. He now serves as leader for two Girl Scout Brownie troops, one of which his daughter is a part of and says that he finds the greatest joy in passing skills that he has learned to the next generation.

Pete Tevlin poses with his troop.
Pete Tevlin of Cypress has been a Girl Scout volunteer for 10 years. After being involved in scouting since he was a boy and serving as a Boy Scout volunteer for his son’s troop, serving as a Girl Scout volunteer for his two daughters was a natural progression. Tevlin enjoys sharing outdoor experiences and community service activities that are fun, helpful to others and challenge girls to broaden their horizons.

“I enjoy watching the way our girls become active little planners in eager anticipation of a new experience, seeing the smiles on their faces during events and knowing that involvement in scouting lays the groundwork for making good choices for a lifetime,” said Tevlin.

Tevlin encourages fathers to carve out time for their girls and put other things aside, if possible. He concluded that parents won’t regret it, their daughters will greatly appreciate it and the San Jacinto Council, which provides volunteers with training, will make you feel welcome.

For more information on becoming a Girl Scout volunteer, visit