Gold Award Girl Scout: Lauren Butler, Colorado Springs, “Book Donation Pipeline”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

A lot of schools have library books and textbooks that they are throwing away because a lot of schools are switching to digital libraries and e-textbooks. The books that they are throwing away are in good condition and could still be used by a lot of people with restricted access to internet resources. So, my project was to get these books from the schools and get them to places where they will be read.

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

I collected more than 3,000 books and donated them to multiple places.

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

My project is sustainable because I got Pine Creek High School’s National Honor Society (NHS) on board and they will be continuing my project. I also submitted my project to the NHS database, so other high schools with National Honor Societies could replicate my project.

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

I donated the books out of the city, out of the state, and out of the country. Besides that, by submitting my project to the NHS database hopefully other schools will try my project in their communities.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned that I am not great at email communication. Because of COVID-19, the majority of the communication for my project was over email. I know the basics of how to communicate over email, but it was definitely hard when that was all I had to rely on for most of my communication.

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

I am hoping that with my Gold Award I can get into a good college and get good scholarships. Besides that, I think it helped me figure out how to network with people and get the books to the right places. Also, I think just putting yourself out there.

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 I got to work with so many other people. In Girl Scouts, there are events where you see other troops, but other than that, I don’t meet a lot of other Girl Scouts, especially not very many around my age. With getting my Gold Award, I met a lot of new people and council members that I wouldn’t have known if I hadn’t gotten my Gold Award.

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

I definitely had to be innovative when earning my Gold Award. Especially because of the pandemic, there were a lot of places that wouldn’t take books and people who wouldn’t respond to my emails. Trying to think of new ideas of where books should go. Like thinking of the prison system, nursing homes, homeschooling communities, these were all places that I hadn’t really considered until starting my project and realizing that if I wanted to actually finish my project, I was going to have to do a lot more thinking outside of the box to get these books to schools.

**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.