Why a Council Service Fee?

Girl Scouts of Eastern South Carolina provides unique leadership opportunities not available through any other organization to more than 10,000 girls and 3,000 adults.

Members pay an annual membership fee ($15) that goes directly to Girl Scouts of the USA. None of that annual membership fee stays locally within our council, making it difficult to facilitate the Girl Scout Leadership Experience at the local level. Each year, the cost to provide that experience is more than $250 per girl.

A council service fee (CSF) supports the operation of our local Girl Scout council the same way the national membership fee supports the operation of GSUSA.

Recently, the GSESC Board of Directors voted and decided on the maximum amount for the council service fee. National membership dues will increase to $15 per person starting with the 2013-14 membership year. In addition to the $15 membership fee, the council service fee will be $15, as well. This additional fee is for girls only, with a full amount of $30 per girl.

Our council heavily subsidizes the cost of girl activities, events, adult leadership development and council-sponsored programs, such as workshops to address challenge issues, such as bullying and healthy media images, take action projects and scholarship opportunities.

The CSF will support the operation of our local GS council, including:

  • Subsidizing year-round turn-key outdoor experiences for girls at Sandy Ridge.
  • Processing and placement of girls in the Girl Scout program, facilitated by staff field directors to engage girls through troops and series and other pathways.
  • Supporting technology initiatives such as online registration, e-newsletters, websites, event calendars and support of other technological advances
  • General operating expenses for all council service centers and Sandy Ridge, including utilities, insurance, maintenance and capital expenses
  • Providing the quality customer care and service necessary to manage a membership of 10,000 girls and 3,000 adults
  • Protecting girls and adults by providing liability insurance coverage for all council approved events, activities and non-Girl Scout facility use

Girl Scout volunteer delegates from across the country overwhelmingly approved the council service fee at the 52nd GSUSA National Council Session in November, 2011. The delegates recognized the financial realities of operating a Girl Scout council in today’s economy and felt strongly that adding the CSF was necessary given the substantial value of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

The CSF, along with product sales, corporate and foundation support and contributions from families and friends, gives us the combined resources needed to get to the more than $250 necessary to deliver the premiere leadership program for girls. Girl Scouting is the premier leadership development program for girls and we are still much more affordable that alternate youth activities.

We owe it to our girls to give them the opportunity to be the leaders they want to be, to be the leaders the world needs them to be. The CSF provides a source of sustainable and renewable income that supports our local Girl Scout council in a way that ensures the Girl Scout program will remain strong and viable in our local community.