Local idea to support Chippewa Falls Girl Scouts gets international attention

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) -- Word spread quickly on Saturday afternoon about the tragic accident in Chippewa Falls that killed three Girl Scouts and a chaperone.

Image Source: MGN

“As a leader, it's horrifying,” said Elizabeth Steffel, delegate for Girl Scouts on the west side of Green Bay. “I can't even imagine what these families are going through.”

Steffel worked with troop leaders in the Green Bay area to coordinate a fundraiser.

“We also wanted to do something that would honor them or that would memorialize them, because this is big,” she said. “They died while doing service. Girl Scouts is all about doing service to others and helping the community, and they died doing that.”

Fun Patches by Mel created a special badge to honor those Girl Scouts who died while doing service. That money will benefit the Chippewa Falls troop and the victims’ families. Less than two days since announcing the plan, more than 7,000 pre-orders have been placed.

“In Girl Scouts, you have to do something to earn a patch. You don't just get one. You have to do something,” said Steffel. “The idea was anybody who wants to earn this patch has to do a community service project in honor of those girls who died while doing community service.”

That is when she planned a vigil and community service event for Saturday, November 10, from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. outside of the Brown County Courthouse. Local troops will be collecting canned food for Paul’s Pantry and money and gifts to send to Chippewa Falls for affected families.

“I posted about it online, and suddenly I was getting messages from people in Texas and Canada and Oklahoma and Tennessee who thought it would be nice if we all did it at the same time,” said Steffel.

The post was shared around the world. Now, more than 3,500 people plan to organize and participate in events at the same time from as far away as Italy.

“In Girl Scouts, we have to be a sister to every Girl Scout, unity, and support others. That's what it is. We're all unified around the world right now to support these families,” said Steffel.

You can donate to the Chippewa Falls Girl Scouts and families here.

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