Paulette Brown-Hinds, PhD
I was shocked and surprised last week when the San Gorgonio Girl Scout Council featured both me and my mom in their social media campaign celebrating Black HerStory Month:
Join us as we celebrate this mother-daughter duo. Former Assembly member and owner of the first African American publishing company in the Inland Empire, Brown Publishing Company, Cheryl Brown is a leader and activist in our community. After founding her company in 1980, she continues to be a pillar for change on our community, advocating for job securement, education, and local government. Her tenacious spirit can be seen in her daughter, Paulette Brown-Hinds, founder of Voice Media Ventures, a multi-media company focused on weekly news publications in print and digital formats, film and new media content. Today we celebrate their strength and assiduous spirit. #BlackHerStoryMonth #GSSGC #BlackHistoryMonth #GirlScouts
As I have written before, I believe scouting reinforced the 4C’s, those values and attributes that I learned at home: courage, compassion, confidence, and citizenship. My parents always encouraged us to help others and we were rewarded when we did. My mother also modeled that behavior. She was always there to help someone else. She always had a clear expectation and commitment to making the community better. It was a priority. She also happened to be our Girl Scout troop leader.
Scouting reinforced the importance of learning practical skills. Camping taught survival skills and respect for nature, even if our campground was a makeshift campsite in the empty field next to our house. Looking back perhaps it wasn’t a good idea to practice our campfires in our neighborhood field. In our defense, that was a long time ago. Just to give our actions some perspective, wearing seat belts wasn’t even mandatory back then. Working towards earning first aid, cooking, and sewing badges (yes, I can cook and sew) taught independence and self-reliance. Selling cookies and calendars taught entrepreneurship and self-confidence. And today’s scouts are even more advanced.
But most importantly, what I believe scouting did for me and continues to do for 10 million girls around the world, is shape our worldview and the way we view ourselves reinforcing those important attributes and values: courage which makes us strong, confidence which helps us excel, compassion which keeps us humble, and citizenship which encourages us to make our communities better.
So, no disrespect to boys, but I believe that seeking to be a Girl Scout (because once a Girl Scout always a Girl Scout) is the most ambitious thing any girl can look to do.