Last week, I discovered the existence of Frontier Girls (FG) on one of my message boards. The thread in question was discussing the current state of GS and alternative scouting options. FG is one of those options. I spent several hours pouring over their website and decided to sign Bean up as a Patriot (an individual girl not attached to a troop, who has a parent in the military). This is not replacing GS in any way shape or form. I love being a GS leader and have no intentions of quitting (even with the inconceivable lameness and non-scoutingness of their current guides/badge books). FG is going to be “mommy and me” time, incorporated into schooling. It will mesh nicely.
Here’s why I like FG:
- It’s for girls ages 3-18. So when Bug turns 3 next year, she can join too.
- They have an amazing selection of badges, including a bunch that focus on *gasp* scouting and outdoors! While not every badge is everyone’s cup of tea, I love that they offer pocket knife (safety), fire building, wilderness survival, archery, fire arms, fishing, hunting…you get the picture.
- So if you compare this to the new Brownie badge book (which has 28 badges), a corresponding Otter/Dolphin, has at minimum, several hundred.
- They had me at a Jane Austen badge. And a Classic Literature badge. Oh heaven!
- You can create your own badges and submit them to be posted on the website for anyone to earn.
- There are no leveled guides. All levels work on the same badges, completing the requirements appropriate for their level. What a concept! A troop could feasibly have girls ranging in age from 3-18, and all of them could work on the same badge at the same time!
- There is no national council. There are no national fund raisers. Each troop/girl is autonomous. As long as you follow the (entirely reasonable) short list of rules and requirements, then you’re good.
Bean is excited about this. I can see her turning into a badge-earning maniac. I spent way too much time printing out badges that would be fun and organizing them into file folders. Bean has already earned her first badge: Snow. Now I need to figure out what we’ll work on next.
I should point out that this is a Christian organization. But it is Christian in the true sense of the word – there is no “right” or “wrong” Christian.