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GSHCC's Response to Racism

Update: June 2021

We recognize that our Response to Racism commitment begins with us—GSHCC leadership, staff, and our Board of Directors. In addition to being anti-racist, we must embrace and seek diversity and social justice in many forms: gender, LGBTQ+, ethnic, religious, physical and mental disabilities, age, and intersectionality (having identities in more than one community). Below are some highlights of our accomplishments and where we are headed.

Staff and GSHCC Board of Directors:

  • Established a Response to Racism Working Group to help evaluate, expand and guide our work. We implemented the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Spectrum Tool to help us understand where we are in our journey and to inform our next steps.
  • Conducted staff development training on diversity and inclusion, with an emphasis on implicit bias, subtle acts of exclusion, and leading consciously.
  • Continued to build on our commitment to ensure our staff and Board of Directors mirror the communities we serve. 
  • Created a $3,500 Board of Directors' Gold Award Scholarship for Social Justice. This board-led initiative awards a graduating Girl Scout whose Girl Scout Gold Award project addresses a social justice issue.
  • Added two staff holidays—Caesar Chavez Day and Juneteenth—so we are more inclusive in our time-off benefits.

Moving forward: Continue with the above and provide training on how to support diverse member identities. Facilitate small group staff discussions to look deeply at the potential for systemic bias within our realm of work.

Service Unit and Troop Leader Volunteers:

  • Offered Building an Inclusive Sisterhood training that focuses on how to ensure every girl feels she belongs in Girl Scouts. The training encourages troop leaders to create a girl-led environment that teaches and embraces diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. To date, 685 volunteers have completed the training and we now have 10 course trainers doing this important work.

Moving forward: Continue to train Service Unit and Troop Leader Volunteers using Building an Inclusive Sisterhood as a platform. Determine what continual support and education looks like for volunteer leaders.  

GSHCC Girls:

  • GSHCC staff hosted more than 25 virtual girl programs and events in support of allyship, social justice, and inclusion. These events included Hidden Figures of Voting Rights and Advocacy, World Thinking Day Peace Building, and No Man’s Land Film Festival, focusing on women in the outdoors.

Moving forward: Deliver 16 diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice girl experiences before October 1, 2021. These sessions will include diversity and inclusion workshops in the outdoors and Becoming Me events, inspired by former First Lady Michelle Obama’s book Becoming: Adapted for Young Readers. Additionally, GSHCC will include a workshop related to diversity and inclusion as part of our monthly big event for girls (themes vary from STEM to civic engagement, and more).

A critical piece of our work on diversity, equity, and inclusion involves listening. Please share your feedback with us:



June 5, 2020

Girl Scouts Heart of Central California (GSHCC) abhors racism, and we care deeply about giving all girls the opportunity to learn, through the Girl Scout program, how to use their voices for change. 

And we realize that making change begins with us—the staff and Board of Directors. 

To that end, we are actively working to not only become more aware of our own biases and subtle acts of exclusion, but also to take specific actions to address racism and social injustices. We are listening and we are acting.

Our Actions

While this is just a start, here are some of the actions we are taking: 

  • All service unit and troop leader volunteers will receive our Building an Inclusive Sisterhood training that focuses on how to make sure every girl feels welcome and that she belongs in Girl Scouts. 
  • We have a staff team working on virtual programming to help girls understand civic engagement, social justice, diversity, inclusion, racism, implicit bias, and subtle acts of exclusion. 
  • We will provide a forum for our service unit volunteers to have conversations about civil discourse and racism, and how they can support the girls with whom they work. 
  • We will continue staff development on diversity and inclusion, with an emphasis on implicit bias and subtle acts of exclusion, and we will focus on being role models, teachers, and learners in this space. 
  • We will build on our commitment to ensuring our staff and Board of Directors mirror the communities we serve.
  • We will continue to encourage and equip girls and staff to take action in their communities to bring about positive social change. 
  • We have created a Response to Racism Working Group to ensure the above work is evaluated, expanded, and continued, as we know this is a long-term commitment and learning process. 

We’re committed to continuing the conversation by bringing different voices to the table, listening to each other, educating ourselves, and recognizing that while it might not be perfect, we need to begin somewhere. We must acknowledge racism and amplify resources to help end it. 

We all have a role to play in bringing about the world we want to see for our girls. 

Linda E. Farley & Jenni Murphy signatures
Linda E. Farley, Ed.D.
Chief Executive Officer
Girl Scouts Heart of Central California 
Jenni Murphy, Ed.D.
GSHCC Board Chair
Dean, College of Continuing Education CSUS