On Wednesday, March 13, Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast presented BFF- Be a Friend First to a group of students at Lake Taylor Middle School in Norfolk, Va. BFF is a bullying prevention experience developed for girls at the middle school age and focuses on motivating girls to promote peace in their lives and in their world.
BFF, which will be implemented for Lake Taylor students through weekly afternoon activities, is a new curriculum developed by Girl Scouts as they use their expertise on the gender-specific aspects of the national bullying crisis to address anti-bullying solutions.
During the first session at Lake Taylor, girls set the ground rules for how they will work as a group. The volunteers led the girls through a series of team building activities where they learned about one another and discussed the characteristics of a bully. They ended the session with positive conversation by talking about what they are looking forward to in the future.
BFF at Lake Taylor is led by Girl Scout volunteers from Christopher Newport University. Volunteer and Girl Scout alumna Marissa Neal reconnected with Girl Scouts through membership with Alpha Phi Omega, a national service fraternity chapter at CNU. Neal attended the Alpha Phi Omega national convention and participated in a workshop about volunteering with Girl Scouts. When she returned from the convention, she contacted Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast about getting involved again. Throughout the first BFF session, Neal engaged the girls in conversation and offered words of encouragement when potentially difficult subjects arose. She is hoping to get the whole chapter of Alpha Phi Omega, which has more than 100 students, involved with BFF and the Girl Scouts.
Through BFF, girls will develop a stronger sense of self, learn how to develop and maintain healthy relationships, discover healthy ways to resolve conflicts and educate and empower others by leading with friendship in their schools and communities. As the premier organization for girls, Girl Scouts is using their voice to address a national issue affecting schools and students everywhere.