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It’s Girl Scout Cookie time in the River Parishes

LAPLACE — Six local Girl Scouts troops are building business skills and collecting proceeds to fund community service endeavors through the nationally renowned Girl Scout Cookie Program.

Orders are being collected now, and booth locations in front of local stores will be set up in St. John the Baptist Parish from Feb. 23 to March 11. Specific locations by zip code will be announced this week on the Girl Scouts Louisiana East website, gsle.org.

Thin Mints, S’mores, Thanks-a-lot, Caramel Delites, Peanut Butter Patties, Lemonades, Shortbread, Peanut Butter Sandwich and Trios cookies comprise the 2018 lineup.

Most boxes are $4, with the exception of $5 gluten-free varieties.

Cookies can also be ordered online at gsle.org/en/cookies/about-girl-scout-cookies.html. Each Girl Scouts troop sets up a digital profile to ensure proceeds are appropriately routed, according to GSLE Communications Specialist Maleiya Porter-Jones.

She said proceeds benefit troops and the local community by powering experiences such as community service and field trips.

Additionally, Porter said online cookie orders revolutionize the program and present a new array of technological skills to young girls.

“The troops build a page on smart cookie websites and promote it by sending out links and creating fliers and videos,” Porter said.

“Running an online campaign teaches them digital marketing skills. In 2018, that’s very important.”

A mobile cookie tracker app is also available.

Selling cookies through booths gives troop members valuable business management and financial experience, according to Girl Scouts Community Administrator Katrice Reid.

Reid said the cookie program promotes five essential skills: goal-setting, decision-making, money management, people skills and business ethics.

Girl Scout cookies sales go back to 1917 and have fostered educational experiences in women for several generations.

Fifty-seven percent of Girl Scouts alumnae working in the business field said they developed vital business skills through the cookie program, according to a Girl Scouts Louisiana East press release.

Director of Product Program Keenan Ruff said the Cookie Program promotes Girl Scouts’ new G.I.R.L. (Go-Getter; Innovator; Risk-taker; Leader) campaign, dedicated to building well-rounded, high achieving troop members through participation in girl-led experiences.

Ruff said the girls enjoy interacting with customers in booths and being recognized for their achievements through special events, including trips to New Orleans Pelicans games and waterpark excursions.

Troops in St. John the Baptist Parish have kept busy in the past year by making pay-it-forward gift baskets, holding a CASA pajama drive and visiting veterans during the holidays.

For more information on how to purchase cookies or join a local Girl Scouts troop, call 504-733-8219 or visit gsle.org.