FAQ

Questions about Selling
Cookie Share – Community Service Project
I Need More Cookies!
After The Sale
Cookie Dough
More Information
Glossary of Terms
COCOdirect FAQs

Questions about Selling

Is the price of cookies changing in 2015? Yes. The price of Girl Scout cookies will increase to $5.00 per box in Orange County, LA and San Diego. See this FAQ for more preliminary info about our cookie price increase.

When can we start selling? GSOC girls may begin selling cookies on January 25, 2015. Each Council sets its own start date for the fall product & cookie sales. Girls may NOT distribute their order cards or make direct sales until our Council’s start date. Early selling is not acceptable and girls will lose credit for any sales made prior to the official start date.

Can Troops set quotas on how much my daughter should sell? No. Parents determine the number of cookies to order and are responsible for payment of all cookies received.

Do we pay for cookies in advance? No. Troops may not require payment from parents in advance. Payment is collected from customers at time of delivery and money should be turned in to the Troop as soon as possible afterward.

Where can we sell?  Girls should observe council jurisdiction (by zip codes) when marketing cookies in person or online, with exceptions for close family members. Girl Scouts in southern California councils may market cookies at parent/guardian’s immediate workplace even if outside their Council jurisdiction, if permitted by their employer.

Can parent/daughter teams sell cookies?  Yes!  They can make direct sales door to door, at their work place, knitting circle, Bunco group, etc.

Can my daughter & I set up a cookie stand in front of our house? Yes!  Throughout the entire cookie sale, January 25—March 8, Girl Scouts can set-up “lemonade” type stands to sell on the property were the girl currently resides as their city and/or home owners’ associations permit.

Can girls sell online?  Girls may market their cookie sale to family & friends on the internet through COCOdirect at  www.ABCSmartCookies.com, providing they sign the Girl Scout Internet Safety Pledge and follow all Girl Scout safety guidelines. Check with your Troop Cookie Manager or Troop Leader for more details.

Where do I get the Girl Scout Internet Safety Pledge?  It can be found here.

What is a rolling sale?  Putting cookies in a wagon and doing direct sales to customers in residential areas.  Girls require adult supervision for these efforts.  It is not a booth sale because you are not setting up a booth display in one location or at a shopping center requiring permission.

What is a Walkabout? When Girl Scouts work together to map out then walk a neighborhood selling cookies door-to-door in a residential area. Girls require adult supervision for these efforts.  It is not a booth sale because you are not setting up a booth display in one location or at a shopping center requiring permission.

What is a Caravan? Cadette, Senior & Ambassador Troops go door-to-door with a buddy in a residential area while the supervising adults follow in a car with the cookies. Girls require adult supervision for these efforts.  It is not a booth sale because you are not setting up a booth display in one location or at a shopping center requiring permission.

Can I have a rolling sale/Walkabout/Caravan in a shopping center, park or other public area?  No.  In order to maintain good relationships with property managers, stores, and to be fair, only booth sales are allowed in non-residential areas. All booth sales must be coordinated through your Service Unit Booth Sale Coordinator.

Can we do a rolling sale/Walkabout/Caravan as a Troop at one of our meetings?  Yes!  What a fun outing for your Troop and a great way to help girls reach their goals!

Can we do a rolling sale as a family?  Yes!  Girl Scouts embraces family involvement.

What is a booth sale? A booth sale is a cookie stand placed in front of a business, on a street corner or in any public space. Only Service Unit Booth Sale Coordinators may arrange for booth sale locations and assign troops. They secure the sites by working with the property managers and stores to ensure permission and insurance requirements are met.

Can I have a booth sale on a street corner? Yes, but only if the location is safe for girls and customer vehicles and if the Service Unit Booth Sale Coordinator has set it up and has verified that the city will allow this.

Can parent/daughter teams run a booth sale at a shopping center?  Yes! Parent/daughter teams may run a booth sale for their troop provided it is reserved by the Troop Cookie Manager through the Service Unit Booth Sale Coordinator. Allow for time between shifts for rest and meal breaks. Parents must be trained and safety briefed by Troop Cookie Manager or Troop Leader before they assist their daughter with booth sales. Troop Cookie Manager & parent must determine in advance if the products being sold are to be girl additional sales where the family is responsible for all product taken or troop booth sale units which can be returned to the troop.  If determined they are troop booth sale units, then parent must be a Responsible Adult.

Can I bring another Girl Scout with me to our parent/daughter booth sale?  Unfortunately no, anything beyond one parent/girl booth sale is a Troop activity and must meet safety guidelines requiring two screened & briefed Responsible Adults.

Do I need permission slips for booth sales?  Yes!  Permission slips are required for all troop activities even for your own daughter just like at a father/daughter dance or any troop function. Permission slips are also required for parent/girl booth sales.

May we have a donation jar at our Booth Sale? No. Girls/Troops may not have donation jars at Booth Sales because we have permits to sell cookies, not to solicit donations.  A “Cookie Share” jar that is collecting $4 from each customer and then providing them with a Cookie Share receipt is fine. For safety, a Cookie Share jar should not contain cash, but a symbolic item for each purchase instead.  If a customer says “keep the change” girls may accept it, but they should never solicit monetary donations.

Our Service Unit doesn’t have any booth sale locations remaining.  Can I go somewhere else?  After February 4th troops can book booth sales online throughout the Council.  See your Troop Plan Book for details.

We need to cancel a booth sale due to illness.  What do we do?  Call your Service Unit Booth Sales Coordinator right away so another Troop can have your spot.  You can cancel online in Snap beginning February 4th.

Can I take product to sell at work or to my Bunco group?  Yes!

Does my daughter get credit for product sold at booth sales?  Yes!  Check with your Leader to see what level of recognitions your daughter has achieved so far.

Cookie Share – Community Service Project

What is Cookie Share? Cookie Share is a Girl Scout community service project which allows girls the opportunity to sell virtual “Cookie Share” cookies that are distributed to our nation’s soldiers and local food banks. What a great way to help your Girl Scout Troop, Council and community!

How do girls sell Cookie Share donations? Selling Cookie Share is easy. Girls ask every customer if they’d like to participate in the Cookie Share program. Girls collect $5.00 for each order and provide the customer with a Cookie Share receipt. Customers do not choose the product or organization and Troops do not receive these virtual items. Girls record this sale on their order cards and/or notify their Troop. The Council delivers the products to the organizations.

Can our Troop sell Cookie Share at our Booth Sale? Yes! It’s easy to sell Cookie Share everywhere. You can sell Cookie Share donations at booth sales, rolling sales, during order taking and as part of door-to-door direct sales. Money for Cookie Share is collected at the time of order/purchase. Customers receive a receipt instead of product.

May we have a Cookie Share donation jar at our Booth Sale? Yes.  A “Cookie Share” jar that is collecting $5 from each customer and then providing them with a Cookie Share receipt is fine. For safety, a Cookie Share jar should not contain cash, but a symbolic item for each purchase instead.  Girls/Troops may not have donation jars at Booth Sales because we have permits to sell cookies, not solicit donations. If a customer says “keep the change” girls may accept it, but they should never solicit monetary donations.

Are Cookie Share purchases tax deductible? Yes! The customer does not receive the Girl Scout product and does not benefit directly from paying for them so the purchase price is a charitable contribution.

Can our Troop choose another organization for Cookie Share? Yes, but you will need to order and deliver the products as a troop. Girls earn credit towards the Cookie Share patch from virtual Cookie Share sales only.

Where do I get Cookie Share receipts? Cookie Share receipts are available on the Resources & Forms page for you to download and print.

What do girls need to do to get a Cookie Share patch? Girls who sell 12+ packages of virtual Cookie Share donations will earn the Cookie Share patch.

I Need More Cookies!

Where can I get more cookies to sell?  Girls/parents should contact their Leaders.  Troops usually have some inventory on hand.  Troops needing additional cookies can order them from a Cookie Cupboard, Cookie Jar or one of the Warehouses. See your Troop Plan Book and the Volunteer Network for details.

We’ve sold all of our cookies but we have another booth sale scheduled.  What do we do?  Place an order with a Cookie Cupboard, Cookie Jar or one of the Warehouses.

Can Troops get mixed cases of cookies at the cupboard?  No. If you need less than a case of a single variety try getting it from another troop on the Cookie Swap Site.

Can Troops return cookies to the cupboard?  Only damaged cookies may be returned and exchanged for the same or another variety.

After the Sale

Can we sell cookies after March 8th?  Yes.  Money and paperwork is due to the Troop Cookie Manager on March 10 and cupboards close, but troops/girls that still have cookies may continue to sell through the end of the month until they have emptied their inventory.

Can we have a Booth Sale in a shopping center after March 8th?  Maybe.  It depends upon several factors including when our business permits expire for your city.  Contact your Booth Sales Coordinator or the Council if you are interested in booth sales after the sale ends.

The sale is over, but I just found out that my daughter was only a few packages away from the next recognition.  Can I buy some more packages so she can earn it?  Usually no.  Once the sale ends, troop paperwork is finalized quickly.  Contact your Troop Cookie Manager, Service Unit Cookie Manager or the Council to see if cookies are available for purchase.

Cookie Dough

What is Cookie Dough?  Cooke Dough is a girl recognition item earned for selling Girl Scout cookies.  It is good for a year, expiring on April 30, 2016 and can be used only with the Girl Scouts of Orange County.

Cookie Dough/Program Credits FAQ
Cookie Dough/Program Credits Reimbursement Form

How can Cookie Dough be used?  Cookie Dough may be used to pay for:

  • Items purchased in the Council Shop in Irvine
  • Girl Scout resident or day camp (Council, Association or Service Unit sponsored)
  • GSOC, Service Unit or Association events
  • Approved Troop Travel (see Troop Travel packet for specific details)
  • Girl Scout destinations
  • Gold Award expenses
  • Girl Scout Lifetime Membership submitted to Council office by September 1st (Ambassadors Girl Scouts who are graduating high school only)

How do girls redeem Cookie Dough?

  • At the Council Shop – girls submit their card at time of purchase. For fax, email or mail-in Shop purchases – girls submit their card serial number in the credit card section of the order form. Cookie Dough cannot be used online.
  • For Council Resident Camp, Day Camp or Events – girls submit their card serial number in the credit card section of the registration/payment form or if registration was paid in full online, girls submit to Council a completed Cookie Dough/OC Bucks Reimbursement form with a copy of their registration confirmation.
  • For Association or Service Unit Events (local community) – girls submit their card serial number with their registration & signed permission slip to the Event Coordinator or Troop Leader as noted on the event flyer.
  • For Approved Troop Travel – girls submit their card serial number to their Troop Leader.
  • For Girl Scout destinations – girls submit their card serial number to Council with a completed Cookie Dough/OC Bucks Reimbursement form and a copy of their destination registration confirmation.
  • For Gold Award expenses– girls submit their card serial number to their Troop Leader with receipts and explanations of what each purchase was for and how it related to their Gold Award.
  • For Girl Scout Lifetime Membership – Girl Scouts graduating high school submit their card serial number with their signed membership registration form and a check for the balance of the lifetime membership payment to the Council office by September 1.

Can a Troop Use a Girl’s Cookie Dough?  No.  Cookie Dough belong to individual girls, not a Troop or Group, so each girl makes individual choices on how to use it.  Troop/Groups already benefit from the proceeds of each package of cookies sold.  If a Troop/Group has asked girls to contribute individual funds towards approved Troop Travel (as defined in the Troop Travel packet) girls may pay with their Cookie Dough rather than check or cash.

What qualifies as Approved Troop Travel?  Troop Travel of 150 miles or more (300+ miles round trip) qualifies as a usage for Cookie Dough providing the trip has been approved by the Service Unit Manager (as specified in the Troop Travel packet). Girls submit Cookie Dough as payment for qualified Troop Travel to their Troop Leader.

How do Troops get their Travel Approved?  Troops contemplating travel of 150 miles or more (300+ miles round trip) must request permission on the Troop Travel Form (see Troop Travel Packet on the Volunteer Network).  For trips 150-300 miles (600 miles round trip), Leaders must submit the form to their Service Unit Manager at least 6 weeks in advance.  For trips over 300 miles (600 miles round trip) within the state of California, Leaders must submit the form to their Service Unit Manager 6 months in advance.  For trips outside California, but within the continental US, submit the form 1 year in advance and for trips outside the continental US, submit the form 2 years in advance.

How does an Association, Service Unit or Troop Treasurer get reimbursed for Cookie Dough received from girls?  Associations, Service Units and Troop Treasurers complete the Cookie Dough/OC Bucks Reimbursement form. Please include a copy of the event flyer, approved Troop Travel form, or receipts with explanations of what each purchase was for and how it related to their Gold Award with the reimbursement form and attach girl’s Cookie Dough serial number. Cookie Dough must be redeemed prior to their expiration date (regardless of the date of event or travel).

How can I use Cookie Dough to pay for Weekend Camp or an Event?  If you plan on using Cookie Dough for Weekend Camp or for any other Council Sponsored event where registration is offered on our web pages, we recommend that you pay in full on the web page.  That way you will be sure to be registered even if the event fills up.  Then, send in your cookie dough along with a copy of the receipt you printed out when you registered.  You will be reimbursed for the amount of Cookie Dough that is being applied to your registration after participating in the program.  Cookie Dough will not be reimbursed for non-attendance.

What about Resident Camp? – You can register for Resident Camp online with a deposit.  Then send in your cookie dough with the balance due and it will be applied to your invoiced amount.

What if I cannot pay for the entire amount and really want to use my cookie dough up front?  Please e-mail our registration desk at RegistrationHelp@girlscouts.org to arrange this payment.

What if I have enough Cookie Dough to pay for my entire Weekend Camp or Event?  Please e-mail our registration desk at RegistrationHelp@girlscouts.org to arrange this payment.

Can Cookie Dough be used for an event that will happen after the cookie dough expires? Yes, as long as a girl registers for the event prior to the expiration of the cookie dough and also sends a copy of the receipt with the cookie dough prior to the expiration.

More Information

I have more questions.  Who can I contact?  Girls & parents can contact their Troop Cookie Manager or Leaders for more information.  Troops will find more answers in their green Troop Plan Book and can contact their Service Unit Cookie Manager. You will also find more information on our Website: www.GirlScoutsOC.org.

Glossary of Terms

ABC – cookie vendor

ABCSmartCookies.com—ABC’s website with valuable programming information and online marketing for girls

Booth Sale Coordinator (BSC)—coordinates and supervises all arrangements for booth sites within a service unit or association.

Cookie Cupboard or Jar—a place where additional product is made available for troops.  All cupboards and Jars are run by volunteers.  A Cookie Jar is open 1—3 weeks.  Cupboards are open 3—6 weeks.

Cookie Dough—a card worth a certain dollar amount that can be used for any Girl Scouts of Orange County Resident or Day Camp, GSOC, Service Unit or Association event, approved Troop/Group travel, or for items purchased at the Girl Scout Shop in Irvine or Seal Beach.

Cookie Share—a Girl Scout community service project that allows girls the opportunity to participate by selling virtual “Cookie Share” cookies that are distributed to our men and women serving our country and local food banks.  See page 5 of the Troop Plan Book for more inforamtion.

Damaged Product Report—form used to report damaged product.

Delinquency Report—form used to report someone who is delinquent in paying for product.

E-Biz—Girl Scouts of Orange County’s online registration system.

Family Guide—informational guide and responsibility form given to parents/guardians of all Girl Scouts participating in the sale.

Parent Responsibility Form— found in the Family Guide is a form parents/guardians must complete giving their Girl Scout permission to participate in the sale.

Personify—Girl Scouts of Orange County’s membership database.

Receipt Booklet—NCR booklet of receipts used every time cookies are picked up and a payment is made by the girls in your troop.  Completed receipts are to be signed by the Troop Cookie Manager and countersigned by the girl’s parent/guardian.  Troops keep original copy (white) and yellow goes to parent.

Responsible Adult—a volunteer appointed and briefed by the leaders.  Must be a registered adult Girl Scout who has completed the Volunteer Application and screening process.

Safety Activity Checkpoints—Guide for planning and implementation of specific activities.  They represent the basic minimums to follow; they are not all-inclusive.  They are the extensions of the basic safety guidelines and program standards and are also starting points for investigating resources with more in-depth information.

SNAP—online system used to manage the cookie sale.

SU – abbreivation for Service Unit

SUPM—abbreviation for Service Unit Product Manager, a volunteer who manages the product program for a service unit.

TPM—abbreviation for Troop Product Manager, the volunteer who manages the product program for a troop/group.

Troop Plan Book—instruction booklet that explains the nuts and bolts of the cookie sale.

VN – abbreviation for Volunteer Network (see definition below).

Volunteer Position Description and Agreement form—position description signed by the volunteer.

Volunteer Application with Background Screening—form all volunteers must have on file at the Girl Scout Council in order to work with girls and handle money.  Available on the Volunteer Network.

Volunteer Essentials—GSUSA handbook for all volunteers.  Available on the Volunteer Network.

Volunteer Network (VN)—password protected website where forms and other information regarding the fall sale can be found.  The Volunteer Network can be found on GSOC’s website (www.GirlScoutsOC.org).