Girl Scouts Return $100K Donation Because Donor Asked That It Not Be Used for Transgender Girls

Melanie Arter
By Melanie Arter | June 30, 2015 | 2:52 PM EDT

Six-year-old Coy Mathis (left), who was born a boy but identifies as a girl, plays with sister Auri, 2, at their home in Fountain, Colo., earlier this year. (AP Photo)

The CEO of the Girls Scouts of Western Washington has returned a $100,000 gift because the donor asked that it not be used for transgender girls, according to the Seattle Met.

After Megan Ferland received the donation – which represented nearly a quarter of the council’s annual fundraising goal – she received a letter from the donor with the request: “Please guarantee that our gift will not be used to support transgender girls. If you can’t, please return the money.”

Ferland said she returned the money, because “Girls Scouts is for every girl, and every girl should have the opportunity to be a Girl Scout if she wants to.”

Ferland launched a fundraising campaign #ForEVERYGirl through Indiegogo to replace the donation, which would have been used for girls who can’t afford to take part in the Girl Scouts.

“Help us raise back the $100,000 a donor asked us to return because we welcome transgender girls,” Girl Scouts of Western Washington said on its website and its fundraising campaign page.

“Girl Scouts of Western Washington recently received a $100,000 donation to help girls participate in Girl Scouts. We were thrilled!” the Indiegogo page stated.

“However, when the fact that Girl Scouts welcomes all girls, including transgender girls, was in the news, the donor asked us to return their gift unless we guaranteed that the money would not be used to help transgender girls. We said Girl Scouts is for EVERY girl. And we gave the money back,” the website stated.

“Our vision at Girl Scouts of Western Washington is that EVERY girl in our region — regardless of her race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, gender identity or geographic location — is empowered to unleash her potential, build her future and transform her world,” it added.

According to Seattle Met, Ferland met her $100,000 fundraising goal as of Tuesday.

This is not the first time Ferland or the Girl Scouts has made news because of its inclusion of transgender girls.

After a seven-year-old boy who dresses and identifies as a girl was denied entry to a Denver, Colo., chapter of the Girl Scouts in 2012, Ferland – who was head of the Girl Scouts’ Colorado council at the time – checked with the council attorney and then issued a statement saying the Girl Scouts was “an inclusive organization” that accepts “all girls” from kindergarten through 12th grade.

“If a child identifies as a girl and the child's family presents her as a girl, Girl Scouts of Colorado welcomes her as a Girl Scout. Our requests for support of transgender kids have grown, and Girl Scouts of Colorado is working to best support these children, their families and the volunteers who serve them,” Ferland said at the time.

“In this case, an associate delivering our program was not aware of our approach. She contacted her supervisor, who immediately began working with the family to get the child involved and supported in Girl Scouts. We are accelerating our support systems and training so that we're better able to serve all girls, families and volunteers," she added.

H/T Seattle Met

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