Documentary at PSU discusses a Girl Scout outreach program

March 16th, 2012 by Tim

PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Girl Scout Troop 1500 from Austin, Texas, appears to be like most other troops in the national organization. But once a month, the Scouts make a trip to the Gatesville Women’s Prison. To visit their mothers.

The story of this special Girl Scout Troop and others across the country is told in the documentary “Troop 1500.” The film will be screened Tuesday, April 3, at 7:00 p.m. in Plymouth State University’s Boyd Hall Room 001. The screening, part of the PBS “Community Cinema” series, is free and open to the public. Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice Stephanie J. Halter and Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice Kristine Levan lead a discussion following the film. Guests from the Girl Scouts of the Green and White Mountains will also discuss the program in New Hampshire and Vermont.

Girl Scout Troop 1500 is part of the national organization’s “Girl Scouts Beyond Bars” (GSBB) program. At first glance, the girls appear typical, participating in many scout activities while dreaming of their lives as grownups. The program also reunites these girls with their mothers who are serving time for serious crimes, helping to rebuild the lives and bonds of mother and daughter.

Begun in 1992, GSBB was founded in Baltimore as a pilot project between the Girl Scouts and the National Institute of Justice, arranging for formal visits between Scouts and their incarcerated mothers. Since then, the concept has spread to more than 30 troops in 23 states, serving nearly a thousand girls at any one time and keeping the vital mother-daughter connection alive through the bars and across the razor wire of America’s women’s prisons.

See a trailer for this film and learn about other films in the Community Cinema series here.

Community Cinema, a partnership between PSU and New Hampshire Public Television, features documentary screenings from the PBS Independent Lens series followed by a discussion facilitated by PSU faculty members. Each screening is free and open to the public.

For more information about this release, contact Tim Kershner, PSU Chief Public Relations Officer, (603) 535-2476 or tlkershner@plymouth.edu

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