Each year a girl has been in Girl Scouting, she receives a membership star. These stars can easily be purchased at your local Girl Scout shop and are a nice award for recognizing a girl's committment to Girl Scouts for a whole year. The gold, six-pointed stars are mounted on a colored disc and are pinned below the troop number on girls' vests or sashes. Whether they seem like it or not, these membership stars are an important part of a Girl Scout's uniform.
Each level of Girl Scouting receives the same gold membership star, but a different colored disc. This way, when looking at a girl's vest, you can easily tell how long she was a Girl Scout and in which levels she participated. Here is the break-down of how the various levels correspond with the color discs:
- Daisies - blue disc
- Brownies - green disc
- Juniors - yellow disc
- Cadettes - white disc
- Seniors - red disc
- Ambassadors - navy disc
The stars and discs are placed below the troop numbers. This first year Brownie was a Daisy for 2 years and has not yet received her Brownie star and disc.
This first year Cadette has been a Girl Scout for 5 years. She was a Brownie for 3 years (back when the Brownie program was 1st - 3rd grade) and a Junior for 2 years. She has 3 green discs to represent her 3 Brownie years and 2 yellow discs to represent her 2 Junior years.
When girls have been a member of Girl Scouting for five years, five membership stars can be replaced with the 5 year pin. Most girls today prefer to leave all of the stars and discs on their vests, but we like to wear our five-year pins. The chains of the year pins are attached to either the traditional (eagle) membership pin pictured below or the contemporary (profiles) membership pin. The year pin itself is pinned into the vest just above the membership pin.
If a Junior or Cadette chooses to wear the 5 year pin, then she takes off her 5 corresponding Daisy, Brownie, and Junior stars. She then adds a star and disc at the end of her 6th year of membership and so on. This bridging Cadette has a 5 year pin over by her insignia tab on the other side of her vest, then the 3 stars and discs seen below to represent her 3 years of Cadettes. If a girl has been a Girl Scout continuously since kindergarten, then she can begin to wear her 5 year pin at the end of her first Junior year.
Adult leaders, co-leaders, and volunteers do not wear membership stars and discs, but they are honored with year pins, officially named membership numeral guards. If they have been girl members, they add those years (consecutive or non-consecutive) onto their number of adult Girl Scouting years. If adult Girl Scouts were not girl members, the first year pin they would be eligible to receive is the 5 year pin. Membership numeral guards are awarded in 5 year increments.