Vintage Girl Scout Online Museum

 

Girl Scout Troops On Foreign Soils, TOFS and Overseas


Almost as long as there has been Girl Scouting, there have been Americans living overseas eager to be a part of the program. At first, Lone Troops were active - the first being in China. The North Atlantic Girl Scout Council was organized in 1951 to help serve Girl Scouts in Europe and Africa. TOFS stood for Troops on Foreign Soils, a term that lasted until 1980 when it changed to USA Girl Scouts Overseas. West Pacific GSC serves Girl Scouts in Japan, Korea as well as other areas.
 
Katie Cox writes that USA Girl Scouts Overseas "is open to American girls living overseas and girls attending an American or International school. That means that we now serve more than just American girls.  In some countries, we are beginning to pick up more and more 3rd country nationals
and even girls from the host country (depending on the relationship we have with the host country WAGGGS organization.)  In Kuwait, for example, the older girl troop is definitely predominantly non-American.  But, if we
didn't do that, we wouldn't have an older girl troop, as we wouldn't have 
enough girls to do it!
Some places still have only American girls in their program, some have mostly American girls, and others have quite a few girls who are non-Americans.

girls with American passports or attend an American school overseas - military and diplomatic dependents as well as simply Americans living overseas."
 
 There are unique official insignias allowed to these members; the USAGSO pin (2 known versions) and the International Understanding pin.
 
In 1965, unable to attended the Senior Girl Scout Roundup, the North Atlantic GSC held their own Roundup at Verona, Italy. 117 Girl Scouts and Girl guides attended the 12 day event in the shadow of the Italian Alps

 

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Girl Scouts
sigonella.jpg
 
Sigonella, Sicily

 

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Standard Overseas Pin for Girl Scouts of GSUSA living overseas, 
usually military and diplomatic dependents. 1993

(gold tone pin with sticker)

 

Look-Alike Alert

Older version of Overseas pin

 

Aggie Donch: pin for the triennium theme in the mid-70's (after one of the National Conventions). She also noted that there was a similar patch available - she has one on her Senior's patch jacket.
1974-1976

 

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image: Talli

 

another version - new?

 

TOFS Council ID strip

Troops On Foreign Soils
1957 Era ID Strip

TOFS Council ID strip 1980s version

Troops on Foreign Soils
1980 era Council id Strip. 
Image donated by Alisa Lund

Lone Troops Overseas Council ID strip

1980 Era Council ID Strip
 
West Pacific Girl Scouts 2000
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Traded with Tina S.
 
West Pacific Girl Scouts Korea
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Traded with Tina S.
 
West Pacific Girl Scouts Mainland Japan
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Traded with Tina S.
West Pacific Girl Scouts Okinawa
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Traded with Tina S.
Japan USA Friendship Flag Pin
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image donated by Jackie Peters

Kuwait

USA Girl Scout Overseas - Kuwait
Note from Katie: 
I've attached a scan of our pin from here in Kuwait. The pin was created 
last year (2000) based on the design of our patch, which was done in 1998. 
The patch was originally a colored pencil drawing done by a USAGSO Kuwait 
Cadette in the spring of 1998. It was turned into a patch by Design-It. 
The pin was done by Lapel Inc. 
Katie Cox 
Chairman, Trainer, Cadette-Senior Leader 
USA Girl Scouts Overseas - Kuwait 

Troops on Foreign Soil Pin

Troops On Foreign Soils Pin (approx.. 1980)

Image donated by Alisa Lund 
Junior Leader 
Lone Troops Overseas 
Hohenfels, Germany

West Pacific Girl Scout Council Pin (Korea). 1987

International Friendship Pin

International Friendship
Official GSUSA Earned Pin.
 This pin can only be earned by American Girl Scouts overseas 
who fulfill requirements meant to foster friendship with others.