Pioneer Girls

Serving thousands of churches through much of North America, Pioneer Clubs has a rich connection with Wheaton College. In 1939, a freshman at the college starts Girls Guild. Betty Whitaker later renamed the fledgling organization Pioneer Girls. As the ministry grew a summer camping program was begun in the 1940s. Camp Cherith was launched and then replicated in over a dozen other states and in Canada. By the next decade a National Camp Council was formed to set program, safety and facilities standards for all the Camps Cherith that were being established.

To celebrate its 25th anniversary and to tie-in with the pioneer theme of its curriculum, Pioneer Girls embarked upon a cross-country covered-wagon trip. The 1970s through to the 1990s saw the expansion of the club programs, both in age-ranges of its curriculum and the gender of its participants. Pioneer Girls became Pioneer Clubs and the overall organization called Pioneer Ministries.

2004 65th anniversary of Pioneer Clubs.

2003 The Discovery program, the small-church solution, is released.
2005-07 Trailblazer, Pathfinder and Voyager curriculum completely revised.
2007 Pioneer Clubs debuts the Exploring program large-group-format club program.

Larsen, Timothy. “Pioneer Girls: Mid-Twentieth-Century American Evangelicalism’s Girl Scouts.” Asbury Journal 63, no. 2 (Fall 2008): 59-79.


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