Florida AHG Troop serves local ministry that flies supplies, missionaries and more to Caribbean nations
March 15, 2022
CINCINNATI, Ohio — American Heritage Girls (AHG, www.americanheritagegirls.org)—one of the world’s largest Christian, scout-type organizations— has always prioritized service for their girl members. AHG girls across the nation and the globe participate in badge programs, service projects, leadership opportunities, and outdoor experiences, all with an emphasis on Christian values and family involvement. During Women’s History Month and all year long, AHG offers their namesake level awards as a way of communicating to girls that some of America’s greatest women started as young girls who honored God and served Him.
Said AHG Founder and Executive Director Patti Garibay, “Service has always been integral to our program. As our Troop volunteers create their programming calendars for each Program Year, they’re encouraged to pray with their AHG Troop Board, Charter Organization, and the girls themselves to decide for whom and where their Troop can serve—and how to make an impact.”
One Troop making a difference through service projects is FL2545. While looking for service opportunities in their area, the Troop discovered Ministry Flights International, an organization that flies missionaries, cargo, relief supplies, mail, and more to the Caribbean nations. The girls in the Troop decided to dedicate their service day to helping the ministry. The girls served by washing some of the vehicles, packing school supplies and cleaning and sorting empty used prescription bottles which doctors will use for medications. While they were there, some of the volunteer pilots gave the Troop a tour of the facilities and planes, including a tour of the cockpit!
AHG Troops across the nation perform services acts like this in a variety of capacities, totaling 417,295 service hours across the country in the last AHG Program Year ending May 30, 2021.
AHG girls are inspired by outstanding women in America’s history and learn that service opportunities for women and girls today are never-ending. The Program Levels of AHG exist to guide a girl toward pursuing Christian leadership opportunities and becoming a woman of integrity in her own way by exploring life skills, faith, and service:
- Pathfinder: becomes anchored in Christ through fundamental faith lessons and Troop service events. The Fanny Crosby Level award may be achieved by girls at ages five and six. Fanny Crosby was an American hymn writer and poetess who wrote over 8,000 hymns.
- Tenderheart: encourages girls to set goals and teaches them about dedication and perseverance. The Sacagawea Level award may be achieved by girls at ages six through nine. Sacagawea was a woman who, as interpreter, traveled thousands of wilderness miles with the Lewis and Clark Expedition.
- Explorer: progresses through the AHG Program, and has greater opportunities for service, leadership, and life skill experiences. The Ida Scudder Level award celebrates girls ages nine through twelve. Ida Scudder was an American medical missionary in India and started the Christian Medical College and Hospital.
- Pioneer: girl’s Christian leadership skills accelerate through advanced opportunities in the Troop and community. The Harriet Tubman Level award may be achieved by girls at ages 12-14. Harriet Tubman was known as the “Moses of her people,” and was enslaved, escaped, and helped others gain their freedom as a “conductor” of the Underground Railroad. Tubman also served as nurse for the Union Army during the Civil War.
- Patriot: develops rich spiritual maturity and practice their faith through servant leadership. The Abigail Adams Level award may be achieved by girls at ages 14-18. In addition to many accomplishments, Abigail Adams was her husband’s closest advisor and supported women’s education.
Garibay commented, “AHG is proud to inspire young girls across the country to go out and give back to their communities with an eternal emphasis in mind. Through performing acts of service, AHG girls build character and valuable leadership skills for the future—all in the name of Christ.”
American Heritage Girls was founded in 1995 by a group of parents who wanted this faith-based, scout-type character development program for their daughters. At AHG, girls ages five to 18 meet together as a single Troop at the same time and then break out into Units by Levels. This gives AHG girls the important social experience of interacting with friends and godly mentors of various ages; members also learn leadership skills within a group setting. AHG Troops are located in local communities across the nation. If none exists in a given area, families can bring the AHG Program to their own area. An American Heritage Girls Troop Development Coach is available to provide resources to potential Charter Organizations and other families to form a new Troop. To hear more about the purpose, mission, and vision of AHG from Founder and Executive Director Patti Garibay, click here.
Today, there are Troops in all 50 states and girls being served in 15 countries around the globe. Girls can join a Troop at any time; if a Troop is not available nearby, they can become a Trailblazer and enjoy the AHG program alongside their parent. A variety of Christian denominations are also represented as Charter Organizations for Troops. Thousands of volunteer members across the country are helping girls grow in their faith, cultivate a heart for service, enjoy the great outdoors, and have more fun than they can imagine.
The “Raising Godly Girls” radio feature and Raising Godly Girls blog shares guidance and biblically based advice on many key topics affecting girls today—from bullying and identity to anxiety and body image issues. It gives parents, educators, and faith community leaders a set of tools, resources, and Scripture-based advice to assist in raising girls after God’s own heart. The “Raising Godly Girls Minute” with Patti Garibay airs on 900+ Christian radio stations across the country.