BATON ROUGE, La. (The Livingston Parish News) — Local Girl Scouts are satisfying the sweet tooth of hundreds of workers battling the novel coronavirus.
Service Unit 122 in Livingston Parish, which is made up of Scouts from Denham Springs, Watson, and Walker, are donating 1,000 cookie boxes to area hospitals and healthcare professionals as their “Gift of Caring” service project this year.
So far, Girl Scout cookies have been delivered to Baton Rouge General, Acadian Ambulances, Woman’s Hospital, and most recently Our Lady of the Lake in Baton Rouge. The next stop will be Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital, according to Stephanie Camp, troop leader for Troop 10222 and Troop 10437.
“[The healthcare workers] are working crazy long hours, and they deserve a treat,” Camp said.
On Wednesday, Camp and her daughter Madelynn, of Troop 10222, delivered stacks of cookie boxes to Our Lady of the Lake. Included were popular cookie flavors such as peanut butter sandwich, thin mints, caramel chocolate chip, and s’mores.
Service Unit 122 donated more than 500 boxes to the hospital, with each box containing a printed-out letter addressed to “The Staff of Our Lady of the Lake.”
“Thank you for your service and sacrifices to care for our community during this health crisis,” the letter read. “We hope these cookies will be a sweet spot in your day.”
The “Gift of Caring” program is a nationwide community service project in which Girl Scout troops can decide on a charitable organization or service group they would like to support with cookie donations. The organizations typically include homeless shelters, food banks, nursing homes, first responders, or the military.
Through the “Gift of Caring,” customers can purchase boxes of Girl Scout Cookies and donate them back to a special cause. Every donation the troop receives is turned in a cookie box that is then used in the service project.
This year, Camp said her troops initially planned to donate their cookies to a local assisted living home, where they also hoped to do some activities with the residents.
But those plans, as well as the plans for most other troops, were nixed amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
However, that gave the Service Unit another idea for their service project, one that could allow them to contribute to the fight against the new disease that has put a halt on ordinary life.
“It’s the only way for the girls to see where their cookies are going,” Camp said. “They’re stuck at home like everyone else, but with [giving cookies], they can feel a part of this.”
Girl Scout Troop 10215 and other troops recently donated more than 20 cases of cookies — or 240 total boxes — to Baton Rouge General. The cookies were distributed to every department in the hospital, from housekeeping to cafeteria ladies all the way up to the ICU doctors and those working the COVID unit.
The boxes also contained handwritten notes, which Dr. Uyen Caro said are just as popular as the cookies.
“The nurses love reading those letters,” she said.
Along with cookies, the Service Unit is donating ear guards — also referred to as extenders — which relieve the pressure and irritation that some experience when the elastic band on a face mask rubs against the thin skin behind the ear.
David Gray | The News