This Time Person of the Year shares 3 ways the Girl Scouts helped her become a woman.

Katie Meyler had an unusual journey from her childhood in New Jersey to the pages of Time magazine.

All photos provided by Katie Meyler, used with permission.


Meyler moved to Liberia in 2006 to help young girls get the education they need to succeed in life. In doing so, she founded a non-profit organization called More Than Me, and after winning a $1 million award, she opened the More Than Me Academy — the first tuition-free all-girls school in Liberia.

In 2014, she fought Ebola on the front lines by turning her school in Liberia into a safe house to provide food, water, shelter, and emotional support for the people who needed it.


Meyler's work saved many lives, and Time magazine named her a Person of the Year in 2014 because of it.


But if you're looking for some Ivy League education or prestigious internships as the drivers of her success, keep guessing.

Meyler would be the first to tell you that it all started when she was a Girl Scout.

Here are three simple (but important) ways the Girl Scouts prepared Meyler for the life she's living today.

1. Service to others is great.

Parents can do an amazing job of teaching kids to be selfless, but there's something powerful that occurs when you're doing it in the presence of your peers.

Meyler remembers when her troop volunteered at a senior citizens center. They would visit with the residents to play games, sing songs, and provide laughter. That's when it hit her: Giving is actually better than receiving. Even science will tell you that's true.

"What I learned is that serving others ultimately served me," Meyler told Upworthy. "I felt great doing it, and the Girl Scouts is rooted in service to others."

That helped lay the foundation for her to serve others on a larger scale as she currently is in Liberia.

Meyler is a gamechanger for little girls in Liberia.

2. Girls benefit from a safe, girl-specific space.

Meyler didn't grow up wealthy. As a matter of fact, she was always made aware of the fact that she didn't have as much as the other kids in her neighborhood while she grew up. That made her feel left out and isolated, but thankfully something came along to save the day.

"It didn't matter who had what because we shared the common bond of being Girl Scouts," Meyler said. "It was our safe, all-girl space. At that time in my life, I needed that."

Unlike sports, where the talent isn't always evenly divided, Girl Scouts provides an environment where everyone is on an equal playing field, and that meant a lot to her.

Meyler believes that girls need a safe space where they can truly be themselves, and Girl Scouts provides that.

That safe space gave her the confidence to know she could do anything and overcome her fear of failing. For that, she will always be thankful.

3. The impossible is always impossible ... until you try.

As a young Girl Scout, Meyler tried new things that freaked her out — like camping. There were times as a youngster when she thought about quitting, but she pushed forward anyway. That never-say-never mentality stayed with her to adulthood, when she encountered her biggest challenge to date: launching More Than Me.

"That skill set is invaluable," Meyler said. "But as I learned in the Girl Scouts, if I surrounded myself with the right team and tackled projects piece by piece, the impossible would become possible."

The work Meyler is doing in Liberia is a huge undertaking, but the Girl Scouts gave her the skill set to handle it.

Patricia Carroll, CEO of Girl Scouts Heart of New Jersey, is very proud of Katie Meyler.

"Katie's journey is an example of our core mission," Patricia said. "She's encouraging girls to have the confidence and courage to make an impact in their communities and in the world."

When it comes to empowering young women, the Girl Scouts have proven to do it as well as anyone. Big props to Meyler for recognizing how it all started for her.

But those cookies, though...

Image by 5540867 from Pixabay

Figuring out what to do for a mom on Mother's Day can be a tricky thing. There's the standard flowers or candy, of course, and taking her out to a nice brunch is a fairly universal winner. But what do moms really want?

Speaking from experience—my kids range from age 12 to 20—a lot depends on the stage of motherhood. What I wanted when my kids were little is different than what I want now, and I'm sure when my kids are grown and gone I'll want something different again.

We asked our readers to share what they want for Mother's Day, and while the answers were varied, there were some common themes that emerged.

Moms of young kids want a break.

When your kids are little, motherhood is relentless. Precious and adorable, yes. Wonderful and rewarding, absolutely. But it's a LOT. And it's a lot all the fricking time.

Most moms I know would love the gift of alone time, either away at a hotel or Airbnb or in their own home with no one else around. Time alone is a priceless commodity at this stage, especially if it comes with someone else taking care of cleaning, making sure the kids are fed and safe and occupied, doing the laundry, etc.

This is especially true after more than a year of pandemic living, where we moms have spent more time than usual at home with our offspring. While in some ways that's been great, again, it's a lot.

Keep Reading Show less
Courtesy of CeraVe
True

"I love being a nurse because I have the honor of connecting with my patients during some of their best and some of their worst days and making a difference in their lives is among the most rewarding things that I can do in my own life" - Tenesia Richards, RN

From ushering new life into the world to holding the hand of a patient as they take their last breath, nurses are everyday heroes that deserve our respect and appreciation.

To give back to this community that is always giving so selflessly to others, CeraVe® put out a call to nurses to share their stories for a chance to be featured in Heroes Behind the Masks, a digital content series shining a light on nurses who go above and beyond to provide safe and quality care to patients and their communities.

First up: Tenesia Richards, a labor and delivery nurse working in New York City who, in addition to her regular job, started a community outreach program in a homeless shelter that houses expectant mothers for up to one year postpartum.

Tenesia | Heroes Behind the Masks presented by CeraVe www.youtube.com

Upon learning at a conference that black mothers in the U.S. die at three to four times the rate of white mothers, one of the widest of all racial disparities in women's health, Richards decided to take further action to help her community. She, along with a handful of fellow nurses, volunteered to provide antepartum, childbirth and postpartum education to the women living at the shelter. Additionally, they looked for other ways to boost the spirits of the residents, like throwing baby showers and bringing in guest speakers. When COVID-19 hit and in-person gatherings were no longer possible, Richards and her team found creative workarounds and created holiday care packages for the mothers instead.

Keep Reading Show less