N4L 149: "Troop 6000" by Nikita Stewart


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By Janet Perry, Janet Perry: blogger, and Nonfiction book lover. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.


With one feature article in The New York Times, journalist Nikita Stewart began telling the compelling true story of Troop 6000: The Girl Scout Troop that Began in a Shelter and Inspired the World. The book actually weaves together three stories: the history of Girls Scouts, the story of a family navigating the New York City homeless system, and the larger homeless problem plaguing our nation.

Chelsea Clinton, a former Girl Scout calls Troop 6000 “a book about dreamers and builders, about mothers who never give up, and daughters who hope for and demand more.”

Troop 6000 is told principally through the eyes of Giselle Burgess, a young single mother of five trying to provide for her family while living at the Sleep Inn in Queens, a hotel turned into a homeless shelter. Imprisoned by curfews and lack of amenities, Burgess and her family need something to belong to, something to feel proud of while making real contributions to their community. So, with a handful of excited girls and with the support of dedicated parents and advocates, Burgess starts Troop 6000.

“In Troop 6000, readers will feel the highs and lows as some families make it out of the shelter while others falter, and girls grow up with the stress and insecurity of not knowing what each day will bring and not having a place to call home, living for the times when they can put on their Girl Scout uniforms and come together. The result is a powerful, inspiring story about overcoming the odds in the most unlikely of places.” ~from Amazon summary

Inspired by Burgess and their shared experiences of poverty and hardship, others have created troops for the homeless not only throughout New York City but also across the country.

BUY Troop 6000: The Girl Scout Troop That Began in a Shelter and Inspired the World


Watch Jimmy Fallon surprise Giselle Burgess with a holiday donation.

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