DENVER (CBS4) – The Girl Scouts of Colorado are trying to figure out how to keep from going broke. They’re $1 million in the red.

The shortfall came from cookie sales this winter. Not because girls sold fewer cookies, but because fewer girls were selling. Now the organization is trying to make that up before things start crumbling.

“Partially it’s the economy, and partially it’s building the membership back up so that we have more girls and more cookie sales,” President and CEO Stephanie Foote said.

Alli Oswandel is one of those mothers who branches out.

“For me Girl Scouts were a part of my life when I was a kid, and so it was a really easy tradition to jump into being a Girl Scout leader,” Oswandel said.

But a shadow looms over the Girl Scout day camp.

“It’s sad, honestly, but what I think is going to happen it’s going to give us an opportunity to all jump in and work together as a community to make this still something that happens for our girls,” Oswandel said.

Foote says last summer’s wildfires burned $650,000 alone.

“We had two camps because they were in too close proximity to the fires that were occurring, we refunded all the money to those campers,” Foote said.

The organization already made up $2.5 million it lost by cutting operating costs and 42 positions. But now the Girl Scouts must slash another $600,000 by October, which may mean doing away with some camp activities.

Still, what they really need is more volunteers like Oswandel who keeps investing.

“I hope what will happen is we will look at this as a chance instead of a challenge,” Oswandel said.

The CEO says thousands of girls are on the waiting list to join the scouts.


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