New Leader Tip Sheet

Welcome to Holliston Girl Scouts!

As a new troop leader you will attend Orientation and Level-Specific Training to get you started with Girl Scouts and forming your troop. The training is essential to ensure that your troop is operating safely, efficiently, and in accordance with the guidelines set by Girl Scouts of Eastern MA (GSEM). You will be contacted by our Council Facilitator, Sharon Febo, with information regarding this training.

This page will familiarize you specifically with Holliston Girl Scouts and give you some ideas for local resources, trips, and events.

Steps to Becoming a Leader

Being a Girl Scout troop leader is a fun and rewarding experience! An outline of the role & responsibilities of this volunteer position can be found here on the GSEM website. The first steps to become a troop leader is registering yourself as an adult Girl Scout, submitting a CORI form, and attending required trainings. This information is detailed on the Be a Leader page of our website.

Holliston Girl Scouts Online

Service Unit

Holliston has a Service Unit Team who is responsible for Girl Scouts at a town level. This team provides support to our leaders by coordinating town wide events, holding leader meetings to communicate information to our troops, and serving as a general resource for leaders. Servie Unit job responsibilities are listed here on the GSEM website.

Leader Meetings

Leader meetings are held four times/year to update everyone on town level activities and events and get all leaders involved in planning and sharing of ideas. It is required that a leader from each troop attend meetings. Parents are always welcome to join as well. Meeting dates will be emailed to all leaders and included on our eNewsletter and the Events page of our website.

Town Events

Holliston Girl Scouts host town-wide Girl Scout events and participate in community service projects throughout the year. Some of these events have a cost per girl (typically about $5-7/girl with the exception of Encampment, which will be more). You will want to account for this in your troop budget and/or your communications with parents. Below is a list of annual events and the time of year that they typically take place. Those that have had a fee per girl in the past are marked with a “$”:

  • September:
    • Celebrate Holliston Parade – get your troop banner ready (optional)!
    • Volunteer at the Celebrate Holliston Booth
    • Fall Fundraising
  • October:
  •  November:
    • Girl Scouts help out with Thanksgiving Baskets that Newcomers prepare for the Food Pantry. There several ways to participate.
    • GSEMA Volunteer Conference
    • Caroling at the Holliston Holiday Stroll
    • Daisy Troops email Travis by 11/15 for Daisy Booth Sign Opportunity
  • December :
    • Gingerbread house support for Newcomers Club
    • Senior Center: bring a gift and help wrap gifts for Holliston seniors
  • December-January: Cookie Sales – find a cookie manager to manage this for your troop!
  • January: Pick your Partner Square dance
  • February:
    • Make Valentines for the Senior Center
    • World Thinking Day – This is a day to think about Girl Scouts all over the world. Typically we host an event where troops present information regarding Girl Scouting in a different country, similar to a cultural fair for Girl Scouts. It’s a great opportunity to present girls with their World Pin $
  • March:
    • Girl Scout Week and Community Appreciations –
    • Girl Scout Sabbath
    • Girl Scout Sunday
    • Each troop chooses a member of the community to recognize and honor with a special tribute.
    • Many leaders or parents also choose to put a green balloon at each girl’s house during this week in celebration of the week.
    • On the Girl Scout Birthday it is wear your uniform to school day!
  • May/June:
    • Flag Ceremony
    • Memorial Day Parade – get your troop banner ready (optional)!
    • Bridging Ceremony (only applicable if your troop will be moving up to the next level of Scouts the following year)
    • Encampment or Town Picnic (alternates every other year)
  • There may also be an age/level specific event held during the year

Girl Scout Gear

  • Girl Scout Shop Online for uniforms, official badges, pins, etc.
  • Girl Scout stores are in Waltham, Middleboro & North Andover
  • is a great place to get cheap ‘fun patches’

Local Troop Meeting Places

Most troops meet once or twice per month in a public location. The following are some popular local places for troop meetings, though some may have a fee per year:

  • Holliston Public Library: FREE – request form online or at upstairs front desk
  • First Baptist Church: FREE –
  • First Congregational Church: $100 Annual fee –
  • Christ the King Lutheran Church: $80 Annual fee (this may vary if meeting frequency is very high or requires a space larger than a standard classroom) –
  • Fire Station: FREE – 508.429.4631
  • St. Michael’s Church: FREE (typically ask for volunteering at coffee hour or planting on grounds) –

Troop Bank Accounts & Financing

You will learn during orientation that a bank account will need to be opened for your troop. Troops have had success with the Middlesex Savings Bank and TD Bank.

Girls can earn troop money when they participate in the Fall Fundraiser (Magazines, nuts, chocolates, candies).  They also will have another opportunity during Cookie Season from December -March.  If troops participate in both fundraisers they can do additional fundraisers throughout the year.

First Aid & CPR Training 

It is always a good idea for at least one troop leader to have First Aid & CPR Training, and certain troop activities require a certified adult present at the event. This will be discussed in detail during Orientation. Some venues for local training courses can be found on our Training page.

Cookie Info

GSEMA will select a new theme every year to keep cookie selling fresh and exciting for the girls selling them. For the 2019-2020 cheat sheet for leaders see below.

GSEMA_quickbites_issu (1)

Local Field Trip Ideas

Holliston and surrounding towns have many venues for field trips and troop events. Girl permission forms can be found on our website under Forms. Outing ideas are listed on our Ideas for Outings & Activities page, and the following list includes a sampling:

  • Bertucci’s – Holliston
  • A Soul Spirit Studio (Yoga) – Holliston
  • Whole Foods – Bellingham & Other locations
  • Fire Station – Holliston
  • Police Department – Holliston
  • Lil Folk Farm – Holliston (*)
  • Natick Organic Community Farm – Natick (*)
  • Tangerini’s Farm – Millis (*)
  • Shen’s Gymnastics -Holliston (*)
  • Pure Sugar – Holliston (*)
  • YMCA Hopkinton Outdoor Center – Hopkinton (*)
  • Molly’s Apothecary – Medway
  • TC Scoops – Medway
  • Danforth Art Museum – Framingham
  • Whitehall Art Studio – Hopkinton
  • Norfolk County Agricultural High School – Walpole
  • EcoTarium – Worcester
  • Butterfly Place – Weston
  • Also check out the GSEM Program Guide for events throughout Eastern MA

*Note that there are guidelines around venues involving high risk activities such as horseback riding, swimming/water sports, archery, hayrides and gymnastics/trampolines, which you will learn in orientation. Venues must be on an approved list or paperwork submitted in advance to Girl Scouts of Eastern MA along with certificates of liability. Visit the safety section of the GSEM website for a list of existing Certificates of Liability and instructions on how to request activity approval.

Community Service Projects

There are MANY options for community service projects in our local communities. Below are a few examples:

  • Senior Center
  • Timothy Daniels House
  • Mission Springs Housing for the Elderly
  • Holliston Pantry Shelf
  • Friends of the Holliston Trails (PDF attachment)
  • Hopkinton Baypath Humane Society
  • Metrowest Humane Society
  • Family Homeless Shelters in Medway, Framingham, etc.
  • Hospitals (Children’s Hospital or Floating Hospital for Children in Boston)
  • GSEM Program Guide includes options under category of Community Service such as, Cradles to Crayons and Gifts to Give

We hope these tips help you on your way with starting up your new Holliston Girl Scout troop! Remember that these are simply ideas to get you started. The sky’s the limit on what you and your Scouts can do. Find out what the girls are interested in and get creative. Remember that you can reach out to other leaders and members of the Service Unit team anytime for help along the way.

Good luck and HAVE FUN!