Local Girl Scouts are “Showering the Community” in efforts to collect personal care items and break a world record.

The Scouts from Troops 266, 390, 529, 2718 and 4596 took part in a special event Saturday outside the Union Wal-Mart location to collect items beyond this Saturday’s April Showers collection.

The increased efforts are in part to help celebrate the Girl Scouts’ 100th anniversary.

During the Showering the Community, Scouts handed out paper raindrops to customers who purchased items inside the store. The raindrops included a wish list of items needed for the drive.

Personal care items are collected for the community because those items cannot be purchased with food stamps and since only 1 percent of the donations to food pantries are personal care items, the Scouts’ collection provides those items to the community all year-round.

Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri (GSEM) this year are trying to set the Guinness World Book of Records for collecting a record number of personal care items. The goal is more than 1 million personal care items.

April Showers

This past weekend, Girl Scouts went door-to-door to distribute bags throughout the council’s jurisdiction.

Residents are asked to fill the bags with personal care items and leave them outside their doors.

The Scouts will collect those bags this Saturday, April 28.

Personal care items include, toilet paper, toothpaste, deodorant, feminine hygiene products, soap and others.

Following are facts about this region concerning the need for care items:

• One in every three children under age 18 in Eastern Missouri lives in a family that receives SNAP benefits (formerly known as the Food Stamp Program). Households cannot use SNAP benefits to purchase personal care items, household supplies and paper products;

• One in every seven children in Eastern Missouri between the ages of 5 and 17 years old lives in a family whose income is below the federal SNAP poverty line of $22,050; and

• Missouri food banks reported an increase in demand that ranged from 20-44 percent in 2009.