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Girl Scouts welcome newest members at North Shore-LIJ

Louise Antoine-John (l.) and Sarit Barzilay (r.) hold their newborn baby girls after they received honorary first-year memberships from the Girl Scouts of Nassau County in celebration of the group’s 100-year anniversary. Photo by Phil Corso
TimesLedger Newspapers

They’re the newest members of the Girl Scouts and all they had to do was be born in the right place at the right time.

The Girl Scouts of Nassau County paid a visit to the North Shore-LIJ Medical Center’s Katz Women’s Hospital in New Hyde Park last week to grant memberships to all baby girls born on March 12, the Scouts’ 100th anniversary.

Four mothers cradled their newborns at the March 14 news conference as members of the Nassau Girl Scouts presented their honorary first-year memberships.

“We are so excited to have them with us and to have all of you here to celebrate,” said Donna Ceravolo, executive director and CEO of the Girl Scouts of Nassau County. “These babies are joining at such a beautiful time in Girl Scout history.”

The four mothers also received complimentary gift baskets, courtesy of Ceravolo and the group of young scouts.

Sarit Barzilay, of Queens Village, held her newborn daughter, who was yet to be named, throughout the presentation.

As a former Girl Scout, she said she was excited to pass on that experience to her daughter.

“I think she’ll be a great Girl Scout,” Barzilay said. “I remember doing so many fun activities and helping people when I used to be one. They’re all positive things.”

Stacey E. Rosen, vice president of clinical services at the Katz Institute for Women’s Health, said 39 girls were born in North Shore-LIJ system hospitals March 12 and, according to Ceravolo, they all were welcomed as members of the 100th anniversary troupe of 2012.

Ceravolo said the new members were important assets to their group.

“These babies will help us grow into girls, and then into young adults and young women,” Ceravolo said. “We will be tracking these babies here today and the other babies born in the North Shore-LIJ system as well as any baby born on March 12.”

In recognition of what Ceravolo said has been dubbed “the year of the girl” by the American Girl Scouts, the director said the focus was on breeding young women so they may grow into more leadership roles, a trend Ceravolo said was not as high as it could be in 2012.

“We at the Girl Scouts have been in the leadership business for 100 years,” Ceravolo said. “We’re going to focus on shifting that needle in the next generation to make sure that our girls and young women have the opportunities to take leadership positions.”

The Girl Scouts started March 12, 1912, when founder Juliette Gordon Low registered the organization’s first 18 members in Georgia, the group said. After 100 years, the Scouts have grown to more than 10 million scouts worldwide, 3.5 million members in the United States and 21,000 in Nassau County.

Ceravolo said the parents of any baby girls born on March 12 were welcome to contact their local Girl Scouts council to become members.

Reach reporter Phil Corso by e-mail at pcorso@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4573.

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