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Collaboration to empower girls to help create healthier schools and communities
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 10, 2009
Girl Scouts of the USA
Josh Ackley 212.852.8038
U.S. Green Building Council
Ashley Katz 202.742.3738
New York, N.Y. —Two leading nonprofit organizations have joined forces to help girls take action to improve the environment and their communities by promoting green schools. Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) will team with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) to leverage local Girl Scouts Forever Green projects as part of USGBC's National Green Schools Campaign. Girls will team with USGBC volunteers throughout its extensive chapter network to develop and use their leadership skills to significantly impact the environment by working in schools and throughout their communities to save energy, conserve water, increase green space, improve air quality and reduce waste.
The announcement of the GSUSA/USGBC partnership coincides with the mass market release of the Girl Scouts' new series, It's Your Planet–Love It! The environmentally-themed books help girls tackle issues of conservation, pollution and renewable and reusable resources and challenge them to take the lead in protecting the planet. The series, developed for girls in grades K-12, uses lessons and exercises that focus on leadership development.
"The environment—protecting it, preserving it, and understanding it—is a tremendously important issue to today’s girls. This new partnership is a great opportunity to combine their passion and energy with USGBC's know-how and organization to make a significant difference in the future environmental footprint of America's schools," said Kathy Cloninger, CEO, GSUSA.
Green schools cost less to operate, freeing up resources to truly improve students' education. Across the country, school districts large and small are realizing the benefits of green schools. Students, parents, teachers and community members are making the difference, by letting decision makers know they want their schools built, operated, and maintained green. The Green Schools Campaign provides a natural way for Girl Scouts to apply their environmental lessons in their own educational community.
USGBC is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. USGBC launched the National Green Schools Campaign in 2007, with the ambitious goal to provide a green school for every child in America within a generation. Through this campaign, USGBC supports federal, state and local initiatives that advance the green schools movement.
"Through our partnership with the Girl Scouts of the USA, we have the potential to reach and inspire millions of girls – America's future leaders – to impact the way school buildings are designed, built and operated, enabling a healthier and environmentally responsible built environment for future students and teachers," said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO & Founding Chair, USGBC.
Tens of thousands of Girl Scouts throughout the country are engaged in environmentally friendly projects in their communities as part of the Forever Green initiative. Forever Green projects are part of a range of activities leading up the 100th anniversary of Girl Scouts in 2012.
With a membership comprising 20,000+ member companies and organizations, 79 local chapters and affiliates and nearly 132,000 LEED Credentialed Professionals, the U.S. Green Building Council is the driving force of an industry that is projected to increase to $60 billion by 2010. The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED green building certification system is the leading certification program for the design, construction and operation of green buildings. There are more than 25,000 commercial projects participating in the LEED green building certification system, comprising more than 7 billion square feet of construction space in all 50 states and 114 countries. For more information, visit www.usgbc.org.
About Girl Scouts
Founded in 1912, Girl Scouts of the USA is the preeminent leadership development organization for girls with 3.6 million girl and adult members worldwide. Girl Scouts is the leading authority on girls' healthy development, and builds girls of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place. The organization serves girls from every corner of the United States and its territories. Girls Scouts of the USA also serves American girls and their classmates attending American or international schools overseas in 90 countries. For more information on how to join, volunteer, reconnect or donate to Girl Scouts, call (800) GSUSA 4 U (800-478-7248) or visit www.girlscouts.org.