What is the American Heritage Girls Pen Pal Program?
The AHG Pen Pal Program is a unique and fun opportunity for girls in AHG to make friends in other Troops across the nation. All Levels can participate, and each girl will be matched up with a girl in a different state at the same Program Level. (i.e. Tenderheart with Tenderheart). Girls can write letters, send pictures and cards by mail, or they can choose to communicate by email. Older girls, with their parent’s permission, can also communicate through other means such as texting and social media (using platform age guidelines).
How does the sign-up work?
All AHG Registered Members for the 2018-2019 year will receive an email invitation to join the 2019 Pen Pal Program on Oct. 1, 2018. Simply follow the email link to sign up to register. Online registration is from October 1 through November 30 Eastern Standard Time Zone.
What is the cost?
There is a non-refundable $8 registration fee per girl. This fee covers the patch, the mailing of the patch, as well as the cost of administration and technology.
What are the expectations of being in the AHG Pen Pal Program?
Girls are expected to write their pen pals AT LEAST once a month for the 2019 calendar year – January through December. AHG encourages “old fashioned” letter writing especially for younger girls as it develops a special understanding of written communication and a sense of excitement with the daily mail. Girls may show how much they care about their pen pal by sending additional letters or cards for birthdays and holidays. New this year an AHG Pen Pal Ideas Pinterest Board will be made available to all pen pals for creative communication options (i.e. did you know you could mail a flip- flop like a postcard?) Girls also have the opportunity to communicate via email or other means with their parents’ permission.
Most importantly, pray for one another! Spiritual encouragement is the best form of support girls can give to their new friend.
When do girls get their pen pal?
Pen Pal match information will be sent to each girl via her parent email in the first week of January.
Why are the matches going out in January instead of December as in past years?
It was decided to send the matches in January to avoid the busy Christmas season when pen pal emails are having a much higher chance of getting lost or unread. This also allows girls to continue to communicate with their 2018 pen pal.
Can girls earn a patch?
Yes, Pen Pal Patches are sent to your Troop Coordinator by May 1, and they are to be worn on the back of a girl’s vest or sash. Remember that receiving your patch does not mean that your pen pal commitment is done.
Why must a girl be registered for the current Program Year to participate in the AHG Pen Pal Program?
AHG, Inc. values the safety of its Girl Members. Allowing only Registered Girl Members to participate ensures that a girl connects with another American Heritage Girl.
Is there a discount if more than one girl in the same family signs up?
No, at this time, there is not a discount for multiple daughters to sign up.
What if I don’t receive the email invitation to join the 2019 AHG Pen Pal Program?
First, confirm with your Troop Coordinator that your daughter is an AHG Registered Member for the 2018- 2019 year. Registered Girl Members will receive an email invitation to join as long as they are registered with AHG prior to November 30th. Also, check your email junk or spam folder.
If the November 30th deadline is missed, is it too late to sign up?
Yes, the registration deadline is at the end of November 30th Eastern Standard Time. This is to allow ample time to match up pen pals and email the matches in January.
Can a girl keep her current pen pal?
Yes, a girl does have the option to keep her current pen pal if she wishes as long as both girls request to keep their current pen pal. The $8 nonrefundable cost will still apply to cover patches, mailings, technology, and other administrative expenses.
Can a girl get a former pen pal from before 2018? Can a girl request a specific girl to be her pen pal?
No, a girl can neither request a pen pal from a prior year nor can she request a specific girl to be her pen pal. The time it would take to ensure that would happen would delay the match process considerably.
Will you be giving out my email address?
The only person who will receive your email address is the family of a girl’s pen pal. This will be the primary contact if a girl’s pen pal does not write or if there are issues. In the event that a girl’s pen pal does not respond, please attempt contacting the pen pal girl’s parent before contacting your Troop Leadership or AHG, Inc.
What if a girl decides to leave AHG?
If a girl leaves AHG, she should still honor her commitment and continue to write her pen pal. If she is not able to do so, she should work within her Troop to find a pen pal replacement for herself. The Pen Pal Team does not have additional pen pals to assign.
What happens if a girl’s pen pal does not write?
AHG, Inc. encourages a girl to persevere in her commitment to write her pen pal each month. Please email the pen pal’s parent to understand why the pen pal is not writing. There may be unforeseen circumstances that prevent a girl from writing. Parents are ultimately responsible for ensuring that the girls hold to their commitment. Encourage your daughter to keep writing and praying for her pen pal.
What if I don’t get a response from the family of my daughter’s pen pal after I email?
If you are not hearing from your daughter’s pen pal or her parents after reaching out, the next step is to contact AHG, Inc. via the following link: Pen Pal Form. AHG Inc. will follow up with the Troop Coordinator to be sure everything is okay with the Pen Pal family. In the event that a girl cannot continue, AHG, Inc. will try to find a replacement pen pal. This is not guaranteed.
What do I do if a girl’s family does not get a pen pal match?
Everyone should have a pen pal assigned by January 10, 2019. If you have not received a pen pal match, check your junk or spam folder. If the match is not in any of your email folders, please fill out the Pen Pal Form
Who can I contact if I have additional questions?
Questions should be directed to AHG Inc. via he Pen Pal Form