Why use Inquiry in the Community?
Girl Scout councils that have implemented Inquiry in the Community have reported a number of positive impacts. Our resources can help you improve:
- Volunteer learning: Trainers/facilitators we interviewed were overwhelmingly positive about the curriculum. One volunteer trainer said: "I've been doing this for 20 years, and for the first time, I actually understood girl-led. I got it… It was the first time that I could honestly say 'number one, I get it, but number two, I can teach it now.'"
- Program quality: Many councils struggle to consistently implement quality program. Inquiry in the Community gives you resources and tools that bring the Girl Scout Leadership Experience to life, especially the challenging aspects of youth voice and choice. One of our partner councils remarked "IC…makes girl-led real."
- Volunteer retention: In a GSWW analysis, troop leaders who participated in Inquiry in the Community were significantly more likely to be retained for the next program year.
- Science program capacity: Two-thirds of troop leaders who participated in Inquiry in the Community workshops subsequently implemented inquiry science activities with girls.
- Meet existing needs: Staff find that our materials are ready-made tools that help them meet existing organizational needs. They also benefit by gaining a common language to talk about girl leadership. As one staff member said: "We were talking about what to do to put the Girl Scout processes into action. Our staff wanted something they could use, but did not need to create."
- Brand understanding: Our recruiting activities communicate the power of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience to potential members and partners. By using inquiry-based science activities to engage the public, Girl Scouts is positioned as relevant, necessary and engaging. One staff member remarked: "It gets us out of the world of cookies, crafts, and camping and shows that we can do other things."
- Partnerships & funding: Finding partners and dollars for program quality and professional development initiatives can be challenging. By linking these initiatives to science programming through a proven model, councils can engage corporations and foundations interested in furthering access to quality informal science learning.