Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Sarah Ness, Centennial, “Destressing Art Sessions”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

My Gold Award project was created to address the high amount of stress seen in the student body at my high school, Eaglecrest High School. I held art sessions after school in the art rooms in order to help kids at my school be able to relieve stress. I worked with the National Art Honor Society and Art Club, along with the teachers that sponsor both of those clubs, in order to hold the art sessions. At the end, I had held 23 sessions.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

I measured my impact by giving students a survey I had made and asking them if they were feeling stressed and if they thought that the session helped to relieve their stress. In the surveys, 100% of the people surveyed answered that they were feeling stressed, with the reasons why being “family,” “schoolwork,” “work,” “sleep or the lack thereof,” and “expectations for the future.” Along with that, 100% of the survey takers said that the session did help them feel less stressed.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

My global/national connection is made through the access to free downloads of a manual for the sessions, and some project examples, on the website teacherspayteachers.com. I’ve also created an Instagram account that is dedicated to examples of project ideas and step-by-step instructions for how to do the projects.

What did you learn about yourself?

I’ve learned that I’m a lot more adaptable to situations that I wasn’t expecting and that I’m more capable of being a leader than what I was expecting.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

I think earning my Gold Award will help show others that I am a hard worker and very dedicated. It has also taught me better ways to deal with stress around me and to help others around me deal with their stress in a healthier way.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

I think the Gold Award was an important part of my Girl Scout experience because it allowed me to use all of the skills that I have gained through my years of being a Girl Scout, along with helping me gain new ones, to make a lasting difference in the world. It helped me draw on all of my past experiences and really make the most out of everything that Girl Scouts has taught me.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)? 

My Gold Award helped me become a

-G (Go-getter): by forcing me to do what I needed to do right now and not allowing me time to procrastinate or not try and do something that was needed.

-I (Innovator): by making me come up with ways to describe every step of an artistic process so that even someone who might think he or she isn’t artistic is able to do the same project as everyone else.

-R (Risk Taker): by causing me to step out of my comfort zone with talking to large groups and teachers, even though I knew that there was a chance that no one would want to help me. I also took a risk with doing an art-centered project because many people aren’t interested in the arts or don’t believe that they could do any projects, so I was taking a risk in the possibility that no one would even come to my sessions.

-L (Leader): by making me step into a leadership position and have to become a kind of teacher to the other students in the sessions along with having to come up with all of the projects and getting ready all of the materials that might be needed to do each of the projects.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org