Today’s mental health statistics are sobering. Children are struggling and the coronavirus pandemic has only made matters worse. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the second leading cause of death among children ages 10-14 is suicide. But spending time in nature is linked to improvements in mood, mental health and emotional well-being.
Getting girls into Girl Scouts is a path to girls getting outdoors and living a healthy and active lifestyle. Last year, even during a pandemic, Girl Scouts in our region earned more than 7,000 badges related to healthy living and active lifestyles. Badges offer age-appropriate, healthy lifestyles programming.
According to a survey done by the Girl Scout Research Institute (GSRI), two-thirds of girls feel like being in Girl Scouts supports their mental health. Scouts can explain how the organization currently supports their mental health; they also have clear ideas about new ways Girl Scouts can make more mental health improvements.
The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas (BCBSKS) Foundation has been a long-time supporter of Girl Scouts and in 2021 donated $25,000 to help girls discover how good health is so important as they grow, get strong and stay strong for life.
“Girl Scouts is all about giving girls opportunities to explore and develop skills around healthy living through badge earning and other special programming focused on getting outdoors, learning to make meals and snacks and taking on an exercise commitment,” said Joy Wheeler, chief executive officer, Girl Scouts of NE Kansas & NW Missouri. “Thanks to the generous investment from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas Foundation, Girl Scouts will grow their confidence, discover the impact of good health and well-being and develop critical skills that will benefit them now and into the future.”
The BCBSKS Foundation gives grants to organizations across our service territory that promote health improvement, community health access and/or health education, healthy behaviors, prevention initiatives and direct health services to the uninsured.