What better way to provide Latina girls with an opportunity to connect with nature, while celebrating Latino culture, than to bring together Girl Scouts and Hispanic Heritage Month.

On Saturday, Sept. 17, 2022 more than 70 Girl Scouts, accompanying troop leaders and family members, participated in “Camp Amigas” at Camp Ken Jockety in Galloway, Ohio.

The annual, free, day-long camp was developed for Latina girls from kindergarten through grade 12. It is a celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, in which girls spend the day hiking, creeking, canoeing, participating in archery, enjoying STEM activities, such as learning about water cycles, making S’mores at the bonfire and creating crafts. Camp closed with music and a piñata party.

This past weekend was the fourth year for the camp, sponsored by Cramer & Associates. The “Madrina” herself, Michelle Cramer, stopped by to spend the day with campers. It is an opportunity to celebrate the diversity of Girl Scouts and to expose girls and adults who may be interested in joining or volunteering to the variety of opportunities available to Girl Scout members at Camp Ken Jockety.

The camp also provides information to potential members about the Latina troops in the council. In the past, many barriers existed for Latina girls to participate in Girl Scouts. For some families, financial, transportation and language barriers presented challenges. For others, babysitting of younger siblings, computer literacy and conflicts with work were barriers.

“Camp Amigas is a special event that allows new families to come and explore one of our camp sites and experience the many outdoor camp opportunities that Girl Scouts has to offer,” said Analeydis Urban, Latino Community Engagement and Outreach Manager. “Latina troops were born out of the necessity to address barriers to participation. Many Latino families were previously unaware of the opportunities for girls prior to attending Camp Amigas. Today, we get dads who volunteer in the fishing and bonfire experience, and mothers who teach crafts and different activities throughout the day. These families spread the word that all girls are welcome.”

All girls from K-12 are welcome to join Girl Scouts. Troops are forming now. Interested families are invited to visit www.gsoh.org/invited for more information. To follow the Girl Scouts of Ohio’s Heartland Latina Facebook page, GSOH Tropas Latinas Urban, visit https://www.facebook.com/people/Gsoh-Tropas-Latinas-Urban/100013277730127?_rdr

“Girl Scouts has shaped the lives of so many women across the state that we are excited to expand access to Latina girls in our community,” said Tammy Wharton, president & CEO of Girl Scouts of Ohio’s Heartland. “We can think of no better way to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month than to welcome a girls and their families to Camp Amigas and to share with them our mission of building girls of courage, confidence and character.”