Dear Editor:

The Girl Scouts of Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois (GSEIWI) have proposed selling all four of their camps, including Camp Tahigwa near Dorchester. This camp has served the girls of this community for over 40 years.

Before the consolidation of councils in Iowa in 2007, Tahigwa was providing amazing, positive experiences for 800-1,000 girls a summer from Waterloo to Waukon. Now the council, which stretches from Waukon to the Quad Cities, is citing low numbers for the proposed sale. What they haven't told the public is that they haven't even offered girls the opportunity for resident camp at Tahigwa for the last two years. If you don't offer it, of course the numbers are lower.

They reported to the media that only 10 percent of their membership utilizes camp properties, while their annual report say 57 percent.

In previous surveys conducted by the council, parents stated they would not drive over an hour for a day event, but they would drive further for a longer period of time. That same year, they only offered day camps at Tahigwa. Not surprisingly, the day camps did not have high attendance. They continue to only offer day camps at Tahigwa.

The council is recommending selling all four camps and building a centralized outdoor learning center, but have not done any feasibility studies yet. Selling four paid properties for a new property with no plan seems unwise. How would one camp serve the needs that four camps served before?

To read the rest of this letter to the editor subscribe to Decorah Newspapers at 563-382-4221 for just 34 cents an issue. Or purchase one at any of the many convenient locations in Decorah and throughout Winneshiek County.