Local Scout BSA troop tells the impact of being in the organization

OKTIBBEHA COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI) – Boys Scouts of America announced last year they were changing their name to Scouts BSA, allowing young women to participate.

On February 1, Troop 142 was chartered in Scouts BSA. It is one of three all-girl troops in the state of Mississippi.

Scout Master Nikki Smith said it was an opportunity she couldn’t miss.

“I thought it was the perfect opportunity to allow some young women to go through what I went through but actually be able to earn the badges and earn the ranks. So I felt that I could give back to the community by helping these girls succeed and do what they came here to do,” said Smith.

Smith said Scouts BSA shows both young women and men how to care for themselves in difficult situations.

“Scouts learn these leadership opportunities and skills that they’ll need to survive if something happens if they were to get lost in the woods. But not only that, they learn cooking they can learn how to fix a car through the automotive merit badge.”

Scouts are also educated in outdoor activities and math and science.

“Long-term camping, high-adventure camping. They also have the opportunity to pick up a STEM program associated with scouts BSA that they can take merits badges and through a STEM program,” said assistant scout master Tom Holder.

Members of Troop 142 said joining this organization has taught them valuable life lessons.

“It comes with so many good opportunities and you’ll learn so much through, you’ll get to meet a lot of really cool people through it. I had many leadership opportunities that I’ve never had before,” said scout Grace May.

“I wanted to gain that experience so what I heard it was opening up I jumped of my chance,” said scout Wendy Campbell.

“I’m enjoying it a lot right now, there have been stressful times but that’s just how life is. It has been fun and I’ve enjoyed the people that I’ve met and I want to keep those friendships later throughout life,” said scout Sadie Steed.

It’s not about who can reach the highest rank, it’s about developing character.

“It teaches you a lot and even if you don’t become Eagle or get to where you wanted to be you still learn a-lot for your life and for your future,” said scout Jenna Holder.

“It allows them to explore and gain experience that they may not have been able to learn,” said Smith.

Smith said if you are interested in joining Scouts BSA to find a local council near you.

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