A Gold Award recipient with the Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma is teaming up with the Red Cross to recruit younger people to contribute to the nation's blood supply.
The need for donors is constant, and the gratification is instant.
This is what leadership in the era of COVID-19 looks like: Virtual training and FaceTime pep talks.
Carys Stringer with Troop 1438 attends a boarding school in Oklahoma City. Due to the pandemic, she couldn't come to Tulsa for the blood drive she's been organizing.
That's just the way the cookie crumbles, Stringer said. She’s grateful to other local troops who stepped in to help.
"It's crazy. I can't believe how far the project's already come, and I hope to take it regional someday,” Stringer said. “That'd be the best.”
Stringer has always been interested in the medical field. She plans to major in biomedical engineering at OU this fall.
A partnership between Girl Scouts and the Red Cross is a concept that came to her about a year ago in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Empty rooms at the Red Cross were her call to action, a desire to help combat the nation's ongoing severe blood shortage.
"It all just started with the idea," Stringer said. “‘Could I do something to help?’"
Stringer said this is all part of her Girl Scout Gold Award project, which is the highest rank a scout can receive. Only 6% of Girl Scouts earn the award.
Sheila Stringer, who is Troop 1438's leader, wears her mom patch proudly.
"Yeah, I'm very proud of her," Sheila said of her daughter Carys. "These are the young women leaders of the future."
Stringer hopes the blood drive at the Hardesty Leadership Center near 51st and 129th will increase visibility for Girl Scouts who spent months switching to virtual events.
"The classic thing is you go and give blood and then you get, you know, like a chocolate chip cookie or something, and so I decided, 'What if you could go and give blood and get Girl Scout Cookies?’" Stringer said.
Stringer said this is a great way to educate young women about the health sciences and reach a young demographic of donors that are desperately needed.
For more information on the Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma, click here.