What did you do for your Gold Award project?
As young girls mature into teens, they are very vulnerable to the impacts of social media, culture views, TV, magazines, and peers. Elementary and middle school aged girls can become more susceptible to the impact of negative views on a girl’s unique qualities. Therefore, early introduction to positive self-worth is crucial. For my Girl Scout Gold Award, I hosted a six-week weekly workshop to strengthen positive body image in 5th and 6th grade girls. During this workshop, I worked to prevent a lowered self-esteem and teach girls that they can be accepted for who they are.
How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?
Each week had an individual theme pertaining to the overall topic of positive self-esteem. Throughout the weeks, I noticed the girls became a lot more comfortable speaking their mind. I noticed a major change in the girls, during the fourth week, “Counter Negative Media Messages.” The girls each had their own opinion and were not afraid to share it.
Each week, I had the girls fill out a journal with questions pertaining to the weekly topic. During the first week, I asked the question, “What words best describe you.” Their responses weren’t very deep and usually consisted of words like, “funny,” “nice,” or “lazy.” During the sixth week, I asked the same question and their responses were, “strong,” “fierce,” and “beautiful.” The change in the girls and how they viewed themselves was a major difference between the six weeks and I feel that I have contributed to their positive growth.
How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?
The workshops were attended by my project adviser and also by the guidance counselor from the elementary school where I held the workshops. In the future, the guidance counselor plans to host the workshops as an after school club. In this way the project will be sustained in my local community. I wrote a manual that included research, snack ideas, instructions for introducing the topics, activities/games, and journal pages for each workshop. By doing this, other people will be able to recreate the workshops and make a difference in their community.
What is your project’s global and/or national connection?
I created a website for national and global exposure for my project. It can be accessed at: iamgoldaward.com. On this website, I wrote about my project and the impact it made on my community. I also emailed three elementary school principals, assistant principals, and counselors in two other districts regarding my project. I gave then all a manual and the information about my club and got responses saying they would keep the information in hopes of expanding the club.
What did you learn about yourself?
I was able to research, plan, and execute a project that I feel very passionate about. I gained more knowledge on the subject of positive self-esteem and body image. I developed decision making and people skills by coordinating the workshops with girls, parents, my project adviser, and school officials. I feel that through this project I learned that I am capable of setting achievable goals and working toward reaching them.
How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?
I learned that I am capable of setting and reaching goals and that I am able to lead a large project. I feel that these new skills will be beneficial in college as well as future careers. Low self-image can lead to very serious issues; therefore, we should be encouraging the young girls in our world. Through what I learned in this project, I will continue to advocate on the importance of positive self-esteem.
Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?
I have learned so much through this project, not only about the importance of positive self-worth, but about my capabilities as a young member of the community. I am proud of my accomplishments and feel that my project has and will continue to make a difference. I designed my project on a cause I have learned about through Girl Scouts and have utilized the skills I learned along the way. This project has given me the confidence to be a positive young adult who leads by example and I will continue to strive to be a positive role model like the Girl Scouts before me.
**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 firstname.lastname@example.org