They came from far away….the Southwest and the North… coastal towns and big cities…all ascending on the Nation’s Capital…with one common goal...to ROCK The MALL! Vender booths, concessions, Rock Alley sponsor tents, and the Dove Real Beauty booth were packed with scouts who were busy dancing, singing, and trading homemade keepsakes with their new found friends from other towns, cities, counties, and states, and countries.
Over 250,000 girls across the country gathered in the District on June 9th to celebrate the 100 year Anniversary and Sing Along of the Girl Scouts, in partnership with The Dove Corporation. Some had never flown in a plane. Many had never viewed the White House in person. Others stood in awe of the Washington Monument and the Jefferson Memorial. Connie Lindsey, Chairman of the National Board of Girl Scouts said it best: ‘This is our largest gathering in Girl Scout history. We are making history and you are a part of it!’ Mrs. Lindsey also went on to say that all women should use this example of friendship and goodwill as an empowerment tool in their daily lives. ‘Just look what can happen when we all work together’, said Lindsey. Anna Marie Chavez, CEO of The Girl Scouts of America, added that the event and the success of Girls Scouting would not be possible without volunteers.
“Girl Scouting is made up of 98% volunteers, so you can see why it is so important to us that everyone keep giving of their time. It truly makes a difference in the lives of so many. One person can make a difference in the life of another.”
Actress, recording artist, song writer and fashion designer Mandy Moore joined the conversation and shared her commitment to the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty. ‘Real women make such an impact on these girls, the community, and the world. All girls need positive role models. Today, we are celebrating a few of these remarkable women who make a positive difference.’ Featured were: Toni Blackman, a musician who became the first Hip Hop Cultural talent to travel with the U.S. Senate Department to help girls and women in war-affected countries find the voice through music; Jane Chen, creator of a life saving incubator for vulnerable babies in developing countries; Melanie Matchett-Wood, a mathematician, who at age 16 was the first American girl to make the U.S. International Olympiad Team; and Lydia Villa-Komaroff, a molecular biologist and one of the first Latina women to hold a PhD. from MIT. Moore also drew from her personal past. “I stood 5’10’ when I was 14 years old. My Mom told me to stand tall, hold my shoulders back and always be proud of who and what I am. I never have forgotten that. It helped me become the woman that I am, so you see, our words have power. Real women make a huge impact on the lives of young girls every day.”
Jess Weiner, best selling author of ‘A Very Hungry Girl’, and ‘Life Doesn’t Begin Five Pounds From Now’, serves as Dove’s Global Self-Esteem Ambassador. Weiner stated statistics that show over 60% of girls in this nation who feel poorly about their looks or abilities often disconnect from normal daily activities. ‘Girls are in constant need of new examples- good examples. They must be lifted up, and we, as women, can do more. We can all help in a multitude of realms. Never underestimate your role or what you can contribute. Be positive, volunteer, give of your time, and never stop helping. Every positive word you can give makes a big difference.” And what a difference it made. Hugs, high-fives, smiles, and goodbye tears were all a part of what turned out to be the ‘Rock’ party of the year.