This story was updated at 2:49 p.m. on Friday, March 27, 2020, with more information.
Even though the coronavirus pandemic hit during the Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians' annual cookie sale, it's not stopping them from fulfilling orders.
Last week, the council made the decision to suspend all Girl Scout cookie booths in an effort to prevent the spread of the virus, but the cancellation of in-person sales has caused "significant financial impact," according to a news release from Chief Executive Officer Lynne Fugate.
To help move their inventory of nearly 300,000 cookie boxes, sales have been extended to April 15 and Girl Scouts will begin taking digital orders.
"Cookie sales provide funds for our girl entrepreneurs to carry on with their badgework and community service projects," Fugate said. "This sale also provides critical financial support to our council to execute our mission."
Online cookie orders are now available here and customers can choose to order cookies for themselves or donate them to food banks, first responders, healthcare workers, food pantries or assisted living facilities. The cookies will be delivered at a later date, when it is deemed safe to do so, according to a release.
Businesses that purchase several cases of cookies are eligible for bulk deliveries.
Though Girl Scouts has also postponed or cancelled large-scale events and troop meetings and asked staff members to work from home to prevent the spread of coronavirus, the program itself has not been cancelled, according to Fugate.
"Girl Scouts is committed to remaining an integral part of a girl's life and being a safe place for her to build leadership and life skills," Fugate said. "A Girl Scout can continue reaching her goals, earning badges, and completing service projects to support those most negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic."
The program is in the process of supporting virtual instruction, including sessions with badge related activities for all girls and families, downloadable digital content for leading girls through this time and virtual service projects, according to the release.
For more information about Girl Scouts, visit girlscoutcsa.org and the Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians Facebook page.