In the spring of 1985, Yuko Miyatake was assisting her husband do a photo-shoot of the Court of Honor Ceremony of Boy Scout Troop 738 of the Nishi Hongwanji Buddhist Temple. At that time she met Scoutmaster Shoichi Sayano and asked him why there was a Boy Scout troop and Cub Scout pack but no Girl Scout troop? His answer was "No one started one...would you like to start one for us?" He referred her to Mrs. Fusako Yoshida who had been actively involved in the Cub and Boy Scout programs. Together they began the process of organizing a Girl Scout Troop at the Temple.
Join the Girl Scouts posterThe first six months were all administrative; setting up the troop, petitioning the Temple for approval, attracting members and leaders, issuing publicity releases, obtaining supplies for activities, and opening a bank account. Finally in September of 1985, the troop was given the number 1213 and the organization was started with six Junior Girl Scouts.
At the beginning, the Court of Awards ceremonies were held in conjunction with the Boy Scout's Court of Honor ceremonies. It was during this time, the VFW Nisei Memorial Post 9902 presented Troop 1213 with an American Flag. Since then, the troop grew with the addition of Brownie Girl Scout and Cadette Girl Scout levels. On December 2, 1988 the troop held their first Court of Awards Ceremony on their own.
The Troop prides itself in participating within the community. Some of the organizations they have volunteered at are Keiro Nursing Home, the Los Angeles Marathon, Japanese-American National Museum, Nisei Week, Los Angeles County Fair, and many activities at the Temple.
In 1995 with their Tenth Anniversary Celebration, the Troop was proud to present their first Girl Scout Gold Awardees. Four of the Senior Girl Scouts had attained the highest award in Girl Scouting. Along with this prestigious award, they were the first in the Troop to receive the Padma Religious Award from the Buddhist Churches of America.
The Troop has grown to over fifty members ranging from Daisies to Ambassadors with a staff of thirteen leaders. This program prides itself in preparing these young women for the challenges of life and producing good citizens. With the dedicated volunteers and the support of the parents' committee, Nishi Girl Scout Troop 12135 will continue to grow for many years to come.
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