Girl Scout Gold Award
By earning the Girl Scout Gold Award she will be joining the ranks of generations of young women who have made a difference in their communities both locally and globally. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the highest and most prestigious award that Girl Scout Seniors and Ambassadors can earn. Fulfilling the requirements for the Girl Scout Gold Award starts with completing two Girl Scout Senior or Ambassador Journeys or having earned the Silver Award and completing one Senior or Ambassador journey. Each journey completed gives her the skills needed to plan and implement a Take Action project. After fulfilling the journey(s) requirement, 80 hours is the suggested minimum hours for the steps: identifying an issue, investigating it thoroughly, getting help and building a team, creating a plan, presenting the plan, gathering feedback, taking action, and educating and inspiring others.
Here are two Gold Award Recipients' community impact stories:
Amber - Girl Scout Lifetime Member
The Gold Award to a Girl Scout is like the feeling of walking on the moon to an astronaut. After months of constant hard work and dedication you see your project come alive, and your Gold Award proudly displayed on the front of your vest. People know who you and your accomplishments, because you have influenced their own children.
My name is Amber, and I am a proud Gold Award recipient. Today, I am a student at the College of Saint Scholastica in Duluth, MN and a 14 year/lifetime Girl Scout. 5 years ago I embarked upon my Gold Award journey and saw it come to life. I presented the “Travelling through History Day” event in 3 community elementary schools: John Clark, Cold Spring, and Richmond Elementary.
Each student was given a Time Passport which they used to travel back in time. Following the passport, they had the opportunity to meet 9 women and children of the past who have played important roles in U.S. History. They met women like Amelia Earhart and learned about her travels as the first woman pilot to travel across the Atlantic and Pacific Ocean solo. A favorite among the students, especially the boys, was the intimidating Deborah Sampson. As she expected perfect attention she told her story of dressing up as a male taking the name Robert Shurtleff and fighting in the Revolutionary War for America’s freedom. They played games with the prairie schoolchildren and learned from the prairie wife what it was like to live. The students created and designed tree houses with the architect Sara Susanka, and tried their hand at sewing an American flag with Betsy Ross.
In creating this project, I focused around the saying “Well Behaved Women Seldom Make History” by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich. I worked to portray outspoken independent women in U.S. history for students to have the opportunity to meet in an intriguing way. Now a year and a half later, I have realized how life changing this project has been. I still am thanked by parents for bringing such an amazing project to the community. I still hear students rattling off women history facts they had learned. I’ve learned time management, confidence, dedication, and organizational skills that I apply to my everyday life. Completing my Gold Award has opened scholarship doors for college, and opportunities I would not have otherwise. More importantly though, I am honored to say I am a Gold Award Girl Scout, and I am proud of it!
Korbyn – Girl Scout Lifetime Member | Twin Ports Area
When I first started thinking about doing a Gold Award Project, I remembered the time I went with some classmates to a soup kitchen to serve Christmas dinner. We had a blast and it was extremely gratifying to see how much we were helping people. I was also taking an Economy class in school this last semester and we talked a lot about how the declining economy was putting people, mostly families, out on the streets.
These two experiences set the stage for my project. I based it on helping the homeless and working poor in the Duluth area, a large city that's freezing in the winter (the season that seems to last three-fourths of the year). Since our winters are always long and cold, I decided to collect hats for the Damiano center, a locate shelter that works with the homeless. I took my love of hat making and gave lessons on how to make them (using round looms) at churches in Duluth and surrounding towns. At these classes I gave a short presentation on homelessness and what people can do to help. I also made an online version of my presentation using Prezi; anyone can search "Homelessness: Facts, Figures, and Fixes" on the Prezi website to check it out. I also held two hat-drives at Esko's basketball games and added them to the collection of hats. In this project I was able to help provide necessities to the homeless population while educating others on homelessness and sharing the lifelong skill of hat-making.
The hat-making class I gave to the 5th graders of Good Shepherd Church was by far my favorite part of this project. I gave the introduction on how to make hats and gave my presentation as usual, but the energy and enthusiasm was crazy; the kids were so excited to be helping and they loved making the hats; some even begged their parents to go to Michael's that day to buy some yarn and a hat ring. They were talking the whole time and I would have never guessed most of them weren't close friends. It was so cool to teach the kids that they can be a part of change and that helping out and volunteering can be super fun!
Girl Scout Silver Award
The Girl Scout Silver Award is the highest award that a Girl Scout Cadette (grades 6-8) can earn. Going for the Girl Scout Silver Award gives her the chance to show that she is a leader who is organized, determined, and dedicated to improving her community. Earning the award puts her among an exceptional group of girls who have used their knowledge and leadership skills to make a difference in the world.
MaeAnna – Girl Scout Cadette | Grand Marais
Reading Help for Dyslexics and the School
MaeAnna sought the help of influential people and groups in our community to pursue getting the complete set of Barton Reading Books for her school. They are very expensive and the school only had several levels. She was determined to complete the set and to help fellow dyslexics like herself.
She has become a "spokesperson" for dyslexia, not ashamed to tell her story "if it helps another student." She has gained knowledge, self worth and self confidence after working towards this lofty goal. She went to the Principal, the school board, and the Literacy council in our area. She hit many road blocks, but she persevered and found the missing link through the local Rural Electrical Association in our town. She wrote a grant, and secured funding for the complete set of textbooks for her school.
In regard to speaking in front of the entire middle school student body, MaeAnna said, "It is worth it if it helps another student get the help I did.”
MaeAnna told her fellow middle school students she was dyslexic and of her learning struggles. That took a lot of courage considering how middle school students can be, but when she said yes to the Principal’s request to speak to the student body, and making herself so vulnerable, she realized that there are other students out there with dyslexia and those are the ones that need her message and her hope for help. That is why she did it!
Girl Scout Bronze Award
The Girl Scout Bronze Award is the highest award that a Girl Scout Junior (grades 4-5) can earn. The award represents a commitment to making a difference in a girl’s community. It offers a unique opportunity to affect powerful, positive change. Earning the Girl Scout Bronze Award involves the time to complete a Girl Scout Junior Journey, and then a suggested minimum of 20 hours building a Junior team, exploring a girl’s or troop’s community, choosing a project, planning it, putting the plan in motion, and spreading the word about the project
Troop 453 – Girl Scout Juniors
Our Troop spent the year making the world a better place at least at the St. Cloud Salvation Army. In Aug/Sept. we did a school supply drive and gave a container for donations in the future for when children come there in the middle of the year with no school supplies of their own; in October we hosted a Halloween party for the residents with games, snacks and prizes; in November we did a food/personal necessities drive. We did toy and book drives in the spring and to cap off our year we spent a day cleaning, painting, organizing , and decorating the Salvation Army's family room. In the end we were exhausted but felt great about our project.
The most important thing I learned from our Bronze project was that there are many places in our community that need help. We should be grateful for what we have and try to help others.
Troop 4037 – Girl Scout Juniors
The girls named their project "Connecting Generations." They worked with Daisy and Brownie troops to bring treats and entertainment to local senior centers throughout the year. This included caroling, making valentines and Easter favors and just visiting with the residents of some of the centers. They got experience leading younger girls and also had the opportunity to get to know some of the senior citizens in their community.
Katie (who is now a Cadette) said her favorite part was getting to talk to the residents. "They seemed so happy to see us. It made me feel good about what we were doing."