Oh, What A Cookie Can Do!

February 12, 2015

Would you like to buy some cookies?

Last night, I picked up 19 cases of Girl Scout cookies.

That’s 222 boxes.

Approximately 5,268 cookies.

No, I don’t need a cookie rehabilitation program. It’s cookie go-time.

Starting this Saturday, the girls in green (and brown and blue) will be canvassing your neighborhoods, waiting at covered tables at your local Cub Foods, Target and Walgreens, and asking you, doe-eyed and sweetly smiling, “Would you like to buy some Girl Scout cookies?”

When I was a Brownie, we walked our neighborhoods, called our out-of-town relatives, visited our parents’ places of work and took orders. Six to eight weeks later we would return to every home and business to deliver the cookies. But now we live in a world that demands instant gratification – and the Girl Scout councils recognize that.

Girl Scouts today have inventory and they are responsible for managing it. They walk neighborhoods pulling wagons full of cookies and can hand over the goodies when you hand over the cash. Throughout the six-week sale, girls are able to re-order cookies through their troop cookie mom, who will pick up more cookies from the cookie cupboard, but girls are accountable for these boxes and the associated cookie costs.

And what are those costs?

A box of Girl Scout cookies in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area will set you back $4. You may think that’s a lot of money for a box of cookies, but you’re not just buying cookies — you’re helping support a 100-year-old organization that empowers young girls. More than 70 percent of the purchase price stays with the Girl Scout, her troop and the council to “fund high-quality leadership development programming that builds girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place”.

The breakdown of Girl Scout cookie costs

Where your money goes when you buy a box of cookies. Source: Girl Scouts River Valley (Creating this graphic cost me $24.00, but it was oh, so tasty)

The Girl Scout Cookie Program is the largest girl-led business in the country and not only does it generate money to keep the Girl Scouts organization alive and participation costs low, but it also helps girls develop skills that will prove valuable for the rest of their lives:

  • Goal setting
  • Decision making
  • Money management
  • People skills
  • Business ethics

So, if a Girl Scout asks if you would like to buy some cookies, remember: You’re not just buying a box of chocolates (or peanut-butter chocolates, or mint chocolates, or caramel-coconut chocolates), you’re supporting girls everywhere. Even if you don’t like sweets or are watching your weight, you can still buy a box, but donate your purchase and the troop will give any donated boxes to a local food shelf.

So dive into a box (or five) and feel good about it!

If you don’t know any Girl Scouts and need help finding a cookie booth, there’s an app for that. This is also the first year where cookie-selling has gone digital, but our local Girl Scouts River Valley troops are not participating.