Gold Award Girl Scout Ashlyn Morrill, Parker, “Protect the Pollinators”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

I created a pollinator garden that attracts various pollinators, e.g. hummingbirds, butterflies, bees, etc., with the help of local Girl Scout troops to show how important pollinators are to the community and what they provide, and to inspire them to do their part to help conserve the pollinator populations. I also created a website and presentation for various classes at my high school to encourage others to create their own pollinator garden.

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

My target audience was middle school and high school students because they are the future of the world. They will be the generation that will have to deal with the consequences of climate change, for instance, the decline in pollinators. I measured my project’s impact by creating an Instagram page for people to interact with. I also put free milkweed seed packets in the school library along with a flyer to explain their purpose.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

The first way I made my project sustainable is the plants themselves are perennials, so they will come back every year. Second, I created the presentation describing the issue and what the purpose of the garden is. The Interact Club at Chaparral High School will be continuing the presentations for various classes. I also created an Instagram account @chap.pollinator.garden, which I have posted various statistics and pictures from planting day. I also created a website, chapgarden.wixsite.com/chap, which explains the purpose of the garden and why this is an important issue that needs to be addressed. There is an email as well, it is chap.pollinator.garden@gmail.com, for anyone to contact if they have any questions at all.

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

The national/global link is that this pollinator decline does not only affect the food supply of Parker, CO, it impacts the whole world. I linked my project to a national organization called Save Our Monarchs by receiving seed packets from them to share with my community. Globally, the Instagram page and the website could reach other countries and inspire others in different areas of the world.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned that when plans change, I cannot get stressed out or worried because I will not get anywhere. The only way to overcome failures is to persevere through them and stay focused on the overall goal. Also, plans change all the time, and it is always good to plan ahead and almost expect the plans to change so I am prepared for anything.

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

I learned and improved upon many skills including leadership and communication, which I will need in the future for my career. It is also a good experience to include on resumes and applications because it shows your potential and what you can do as a leader.

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

My Gold Award was an important part of my Girl Scout experience because it gave me an opportunity to apply the skills I have learned and developed throughout my years as a Girl Scout.

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

I would consider myself very innovative after this project. I ran into plenty of challenges including spontaneous snowstorms, rescheduling, and a global pandemic. I had to reschedule a dozen times and not panic because if the leader loses control, then the whole project could fall apart.

**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.