In the Austin, Texas suburb of Oak Hill, a low-life thief has taught one Girl’s Scout Troop a valuable lesson — people are horrible.
This March, an unknown burglar broke into the local Girl Scout’s equipment shed by smashing a padlocked door. Once inside, the thief stole $2,000 worth of camping equipment, the fruits of the girls’ cookie selling labors. And because the equipment shed stored equipment for multiple troops, the thief has deprived thousands of southwest Austin girls of their camping equipment, including tents, stoves, coolers, and more.
The girls may be able to get their equipment back, but their innocence is gone forever.
“The girls really don’t understand why someone would break in and steal all their camping equipment. I think that’s the big question they have. Why would someone do this to Girl Scouts?” said Lolis Garcia-Baab, director of marketing for the Girl Scouts of Central Texas.
Now the Girl Scouts of Oak Hills have learned the hard way that life just isn’t fair.
Every year, more than 40 million Americans of all ages go camping, and many people first learn a love of the outdoors in clubs like the Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts of America.
Fortunately, a Go Fund Me crowdfunding campaign set up for the girls almost instantly recouped the costs of the stolen equipment. While a cynical person might suspect the viral news story was nothing more than a genius guerrilla marketing campaign designed to sell more cookies, the organization stopped accepting donations from the public once they hit their fundraising goal.
In 2012, Vanderbilt University looked at 700 young women in Tennessee who participated in the Girl Scouts. The study found that participation in scouting was very successful at improving the girls’ sense of self worth and confidence.
Over the years, as many as 60 million American women have participated in the club.