Category Archives: Gold Award Honorees

Gold Award Recipients

Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Grace Dorgan, Golden, “The Nature Now Project”

Grace Dorgan

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

For my Gold Award, I addressed the need for free, natural science curricula that gets kids outdoors to foster a love of nature and science.  I designed a free, hands-on natural science curriculum for elementary aged students that can be taught anywhere by anyone.  I taught this program to urban, underserved, minority students in Denver. I put together an in-depth manual that included all lessons, learning objectives, worksheets, visuals and teaching suggestions. I then created a website for the curriculum where the manual is posted so that anyone, anywhere can access and teach it.

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

I taught the program to second graders over a time frame of six weeks.  Before I began the program, I surveyed students, asking them to rate their knowledge on topics to be covered, as well as their personal feelings towards science, as one of my goals was to encourage an interest in science.  Very few students reported liking science or picturing themselves as scientists in the future.  After teaching the program, I surveyed them again and found that every child understood the main ideas taught and almost every child now reported loving science and could easily picture themselves as scientists in the future.

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

My program will continue to be taught at Horizons at Colorado Academy, a six-week long summer program serving underprivileged children from Denver that transforms the way students see themselves and their future, while also improving their reading and math skills significantly.  In addition, I made a digital manual and hosted it online on a website I created so that instructors anywhere could access and teach the program.

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

By creating a website I have put my curriculum on the internet, which allows anyone in the world to access it.  A fun, free, outdoor science curriculum is something that many people all over the world need, and with this extra education, the same kids will grow up to be conscious and contributing global citizens.

What did you learn about yourself?

Throughout the project I had a lot of people who volunteered to work with me.  Without them I never would have finished this project, and I never would have developed the leadership skills I did.  I learned to rely on myself as a project coordinator, and I learned that I possess the perseverance necessary to see such a long term project to completion.

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

I will absolutely be using my new found skills of public speaking, project management, and communication in my future, whether in college or the workforce.  I also have new confidence in myself that I can accomplish something meaningful.

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

This project was the culmination of all the skills I have learned in 10 years of Girl Scouts.  I made a meaningful, positive difference, I developed my leadership and interpersonal skills, I learned a lot about responsibility, and I learned how to stay focused and keep going.  This project was an important part of my Girl Scout experience, but also an important part of growing up.  Girl Scouts has really given me the opportunity to recognize my capabilities, and to make the world a better place.

**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

Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Amy Nelson, Colorado Springs, “The ABC’s of Eating Healthy”

Amy Nelson

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

I created a cookbook that taught the basics of a healthy, nutritious diet while on a small budget. The book included over 90 recipes and ideas for incorporating inexpensive and healthy foods into one’s diet. I worked with programs such as the Elevate Food Pantry and the Care and Share Food Bank to distribute the books to families and individuals across Colorado and beyond to spread awareness of the possibilities of eating healthy with little time and a tight budget.

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

I measured the impact of my project by the number of families my book was made available to. 25 physical copies of my book were distributed to the families within the Elevate Food Pantry Program in October. Elevate is a non-profit organization that operates within the area of Cheyenne Mountain School District 12, providing food and snacks to families with children who qualify for free or reduced meals at school. I also sent the digital copy of my cookbook to local libraries, Mary’s Home (a local organization that helps single homeless mothers and their children), and the Care and Share Food Bank, where it was attached to their monthly newsletter and sent to over 300 food banks and soup kitchens across Colorado.

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

My project will be sustained beyond my involvement because the cookbooks will be used again and again by the families they were distributed to. Digital copies of my book were also distributed to soup kitchens and food banks across Colorado, who now will be able to print out copies of the book whenever there is demand. I also gave copies to my school and several local libraries so they could be used by anyone interested in my project (or in eating healthier) at any time.

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

My project addresses the issue of obesity. This is a massive problem, not only in the United States, but also around the world. Nearly 39% of the adult population of the world is overweight, with 13% of those people qualifying as obese. The only way to lower these numbers is through forming a habit of healthy diet and exercise, and by teaching the benefits of eating healthy to kids so they can keep those lessons with them for the rest of their lives. I was able to spread these lessons by working with Elevate, local libraries, Mary’s Home, and Care and Share Food Program, who helped to distribute my book to many people and families that could learn from them.

What did you learn about yourself?

This project taught me not only about the benefits and importance of maintaining healthy diet, but also more than I thought I would about myself. This project was not an easy task, and took me over 80 hours of research, testing, calculating, creating, assembling, and distributing the books to complete it. It was through this hard work that I realized that I was capable of achieving whatever I set my mind to because I had the skills in communication and organization, as well as persistence and drive within me to overcome the obstacles I faced.

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

Earning my Gold Award is a huge honor, and the lessons I have learned from it will continue to help me throughout the rest of my life. My Gold Award taught me not to give up, especially when times get tough and to always remember to budget my time correctly and stay organized when working on a project. Since the Gold Award is such a high honor, earning it has and will also help me in job and scholarship interviews and throughout the application process to college.

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

The Gold Award was an important part of my Girl Scout experience because I used so many of the lessons I had learned throughout my Girl Scout career to complete it. Girl Scouts teaches girls across the world to be capable, smart, and hard working individuals. To earn the award, young women must prove that they are all three. The Gold Award is the pinnacle of achievement in Girl Scouts and earning it closes the door from one stage of my life and opens the door for the next, where I will be able to use the lessons Girl Scouting has taught me to make a difference in the world.

**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

Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Kimberly Levine, Longmont, “Food Drives to Save Lives”

Kimberly Levine

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

In an effort to spread awareness of hunger within the community, as well as to rally others around helping fight hunger, I created a food drive tutorial. The tutorial was geared toward English and Spanish-speaking communities who were interested in making a difference.

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

The impact of this project can be measured through the amount of views the tutorial receives on media platforms, such as YouTube. If more people in a community see the video, food banks could receive more donations. The video stressed the necessity of food donations, so the video’s capability to inspire is great.

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

This project will be sustained through the media platforms which support my video. Both the English and Spanish videos have been posted on YouTube and my local food bank has been provided with necessary information to access and upload the videos to their website. These videos will be accessible for all future generations, so people can watch it and be inspired to help for many years to come.

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

The video was translated into Spanish so that two separate dialects would be able to understand the message of how to fight hunger. The videos were also sent to the National Home Owners Association so that HOAs all over the United States could have knowledge and access to the tutorial. In addition, a local food bank has access to distribute the video to other HOAs and people who are looking for ways to help out.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned that I still have a lot of work to do on my leadership skills. This project helped me identify all of the areas that I need to work on, such as public speaking and time management. Throughout the process of the project, I was able to work harder on skills that I was lacking.

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

I know that I will continue to grow as a leader. This project has really shown me that the best leaders are always evolving and that it’s impossible to know exactly how to lead a group at all times. I was able to learn a lot about group dynamics and how to effectively communicate what I needed as far as directing the video. Also, I learned a lot about the importance of time management, I will continue to work on developing this essential skill.

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

The Gold Award provided an excellent culmination of all of the lessons I had learned through my Bronze and Silver Awards. I thought it was an excellent way to wrap up my Girl Scouting career before I graduate high school. This experience allowed me to really dig deep and execute a project that will actually make a difference in the world. I am very proud of my hard work and the final product.

**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

Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Carrie Bishop, Golden, “Unknown Garden Crevices”

Carrie Bishop

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

For my Gold Award Project, I addressed the need for low water landscaping through adding an educational aspect to the Community Heroes Crevice Garden at the Apex Simms Street Center. In addition to fundraising for and purchasing a bench, I also designed and purchased an educational sign and a website domain (www.communityheroesgarden.com). The website provides information on my Gold Award project, crevice gardening, and information specific to the Community Heroes Crevice Garden.

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

I measured the impact of my Gold Award project through a brief survey accessible from the website, as well as a website hit counter on the homepage of the website. All of the responses from the survey showed an increase in knowledge about crevice gardens, and most people surveyed responded that they would be more likely to create a crevice garden in place of a traditional garden in the future. In the time the website has been public (since September 30), there have been 690 views on it (as of February 10, 2016).

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

After my involvement, my project will be sustained by the Apex Parks and Recreation Department and Rocky Mountain Chapter of the North American Rock Garden Society, which has over 300 registered members. Both of these organizations have committed to keep up the garden, with Apex doing general ground maintenance, and RMC-NARGS continuing to plant and maintain the plant garden and website as a whole. The Community Heroes Crevice Garden has also received permission to use Jefferson County Open Space funding.

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

I created a public website that is visible to anyone, and can be accessed anywhere. The website is www.communityheroesgarden.com. I have also contacted the department heads at Parks and Recreation departments in the area, and shared my project and the website with them, so that they, if they choose, can implement the idea and further share it in their communities. I shared my website and project with family members who live in other states, and they have shared the website further. I have received survey responses from Colorado, New Mexico, California, Florida, and even Victoria, Canada. I presented my project to the Apex board on December 10  and was the first Girl Scout who had done so. The North American Rock Garden Society has also included the Community Heroes Crevice Garden in a national brochure that they published. I have also written a blog post, “Unknown Crevice Gardens”, to further share my project. In addition, The Colorado Water Conservation Board listed the Community Heroes Crevice Garden as a xeriscape demonstration garden on their website, along with a link.

What did you learn about yourself?

Throughout my project, I learned that I need a time plan to keep myself accountable and make progress on a long term project. I learned how to communicate with multiple organizations and companies, and how to coordinate an event. Also, I learned that I can be a good leader.

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

Earning my Gold Award will provide me with essential communication and collaboration skills, as well as the ability to successfully budget. Also, completing the award gave me the confidence to know that I can accomplish anything.

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

The Gold Award was a huge part of my Girl Scout experience; it took many of the skills and abilities I have learned from 10 years of Girl Scouts, and allowed me to apply the knowledge to create an amazing addition to the community garden. It was a great cumulative experience, and I will continue to hold the memories of my project as some of the best in my Girl Scouting career.

**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

Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Emily Walker, Castle Rock, “Community Comfort”

Emily Walker 2

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

I created a project that provides teddy bears and made no-sew blankets to the Castle Rock Fire and Rescue and Castle Rock Police Department. Both organizations will distribute my items during emergency situations in order to offer comfort to people involved in traumatic situations.

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

Each blanket has a tag which identifies this as a Gold Award project and contains a link to a survey which people who have received my items can complete, if they choose to do so, which asks if they felt comforted by the item.   Contacts at the CRFD and CRPD have agreed to provide feedback from their responders regarding how victims reacted upon receiving a teddy bear and/or blanket.

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

The Meadows Neighborhood Board of Governors has agreed to make Community Comfort an annual event for the Meadows. The BIONIC (Believe It Or Not I Care) group at Castle Rock Middle School has agreed to take over my project.

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

My national connection was to research other projects that are taking place throughout the country that are similar to mine. For my global connection, I established contact with a Girl Guide Leader in the United Kingdom who had earned her own Gold Award and knows of groups in the United Kingdom who wish to start a project in similarity to mine in their area.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned that I am capable of doing a large project such as a Gold Award project, and that I am able to inspire others to do community-benefiting projects of their own. Additionally, I now know that I cannot do everything by myself, and that it is okay to ask others for assistance.

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

I know now the importance of time management and better understand how to best manage my time, a practice I will be using at college. I also will continue to do volunteer service and community-based projects in order to help others as I have through my Gold Award. I am also more confident in my abilities for public speaking and interacting with those in authority or administration, a skill that will greatly benefit me in my future.

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

Ever since I was a Daisy, I have wanted to earn my Gold Award. I believe that through my project, I have a greater understanding about my community and myself, and have learned very useful and important life skills which I may not have earned if I did not complete my Gold Award project.

**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

Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Hadley Bowles, Denver, “Sustainable Secrets”

Hadley Louise Keist Bowles

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

Usually people have some resources to get food but do not know enough about healthy eating. For my Gold Award Project I focused on helping kids learn where food comes from and about healthy options. To do that, I created an educational program for Metro Caring that was geared to teach kids about food and sustainable crafts. Metro Caring is one of Denver’s largest food assistance programs. It has a fresh food shopping market for low income people at no charge. To help it have available fresh food, it also has gardens for vegetables. Every day Metro Caring distributes food, baby items and personal care products to an average of 70 people.

In 2015, Metro Caring completed construction on n a new building. The new building includes a learning area for kids, as well as a classroom for Metro Caring to teach adults about healthy foods. My program is to provide kids a learning activity while their parents are either shopping in the food market or attending a class at Metro Caring.

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

Hunger is a world problem. By starting with kids at a young age you can teach them how to work with what they have or learn to improve things to eat a little at a time. Once they understand healthy eating, they can spread the word to their parents and others. They may even grow to help others learn what they did. Hunger is everywhere but with these classes maybe a few more people will be able to improve their eating.

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

My project will be sustained by volunteers at Metro Caring. I have prepared 15 lesson plans for Metro Caring to use for children’s activities and put together supplies for the activities. I copied the lesson plans and put them into three notebooks to make it easy for volunteers to use and add new ideas. I wrote an article about my project for the Metro Caring newsletter so that their volunteers and supporters can learn more about the work I did for my Gold Award. The article was published and is a way to let volunteers know how they can help with the program. I am going to also write a similar article for the Kirk (my church) newsletter for members who might want to do something more at Metro Caring. When the supplies were delivered, Metro Caring was excited and the new volunteer coordinator believed there were several volunteers who are retired teachers that would be interested in doing the classes. In addition to my article in the Newsletter, the coordinator plans to recruit volunteers to teach.

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

Around the world there is approximately 925 million people who are under nourished on a daily basis. This means they get less than 2,100 calories a day. This despite world being able to produce enough food to feed everyone. Closer to home, more than 200,000 children in Colorado live below the poverty line. Also, more that 25% of working families in Colorado do not have enough food by the end of the month. Although Metro Caring is working to address these food needs, they do not have a program to help children understand food, what is good for them and how they can create things from other things. My Gold Award project focuses on children and their understanding of food.

What did you learn about yourself?

My Gold Award project taught me about what I could do—to have courage to lead and to learn at the same time. It also taught me the importance of self-confidence. This was a big project. I put it off for a long time because I did not know what to do. Once I got started though, I figured out I could do it as long as I kept things moving forward. Also, I learned the importance of communication. I needed to keep Metro Caring more informed of my progress. Then when I taught the kids, I learned I had to adjust my lessons based on the age of the kids or if they spoke English. Finally, it taught me that I can make a difference in the world.

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

Having made this project work, I suspect I will be more open to leadership positions because of the self-confidence I gained while working on my Gold Award. I learned to accomplish new things, such as new projects to help others, and I may even find a new idea that I want to develop further in my future.  Earning my Gold Award, has given me a sense of pride that I will not hesitate to mention to others.  I also think it will help open doors to other opportunities.

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

Ever since I joined Girl Scouts, I have wanted to get my Gold Award. The reason being that my brother was a Boy Scout and was doing a ton of fun things. So I though in Girl Scouts I could do the same things and I did. We went backpacking, canoeing, camping, spelunking and more I had a ton of fun. But then my brother started working on his Eagle project and I wanted to do one to. So I looked at what Girl Scouts had to offer and I found the Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards. So I started working on them. The Bronze was fun and we did it as a troop. The Silver was more interesting doing it on my own with help from my mom. Then it was time I was old enough to do my Gold Award. I choose something that I wanted to have an impact on and change. The experience was great and it taught me a lot. It was a lot of fun and was a good way I felt to graduate from Girl scouts to being a Counselor.

**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

GIRL SCOUT GOLD AWARD PROJECT: Delaney Fitzsimmons, Highlands Ranch, “Rank Your Read”

 

Delaney Fitzsimmons

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

For my Gold Award project, I created a list of books surveyed based on criteria including relationship intensity, language selection, reference to drugs and alcohol, types of social and mental issues, and presence of violence. The book list is intended for 5th to 8th grade readers with the purpose of providing a resource for students to find engaging books they will enjoy reading and want to finish. My book list is available online via my website, at Mountain Ridge Middle School, Bear Canyon Elementary School, Starry Sky Girl Scout Service Unit website and in the Arapahoe County Libraries.

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

I measured the impact of my project based on the number of students I was potentially affecting by introducing my book list to certain schools and libraries. My book list is available to over 16,000 5th to 8th grade students due to its incorporation at Arapahoe County Libraries, Mountain Ridge Middle School, Bear Canyon Elementary School and the Starry Sky Girl Scout Service Unit website. I also measured the impact by determining who accessed my website using statistics collected through Google Analytics. I found that people were accessing my book list all over the world. 400 people have viewed my project online in the last four months.

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

My project will be sustained with an online website that is regularly updated with new book lists every few months. Karen Sprafke’s 7th grade English class at Mountain Ridge will be continuing to add book entries. Their goal is to survey 100 books per semester. It will continue to impact students by being an available resource at Arapahoe County Public Libraries, Mountain Ridge Middle School, Bear Canyon Elementary, and Starry Sky Girl Scout Service Unit website for all current and future students and Girl Scouts in my Service Unit.

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

Rank Your Read is connected globally because my website is available to anyone on the internet. Over 400 people have viewed my project online in the last four months. Most views have come from Colorado, California, Texas and New York. There have also been over 100 views internationally with top views from Japan, the United Kingdom, China and Germany.

What did you learn about yourself?

In the process of achieving my Gold Award I learned that I get stressed easily without a plan to break down bigger goals. I learned how to manage my time and take even as little as an hour per week to make progress. I learned how to communicate with my peers, advisors and authorities. I learned that public speaking is a challenge for me but with practice, gets easier and makes me more confident and prepared.

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

Earning my Gold Award will give me the confidence to tackle big projects in my future. I know where to begin, and I know I can complete any project because I completed my Gold Award. The confidence and lessons I learned about communication allow me to better communicate with my professors and peers.

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

The Gold Award was a crucial part of my Girl Scout experience because it taught me the benefit of perseverance. Achieving my Gold Award was a goal I set for myself more than five years ago. It was a big commitment and at times seemed impossible to achieve. By finishing, I proved to myself that I could achieve even the most intimidating projects. My Gold Award gave me the opportunity to use the skills I had learned throughout my twelve years of scouting. I saw the benefit of working with a team as I worked with my advisor, teachers, parents and students. I used my resources at the Girl Scout office to help me distribute information about Rank Your Read. Most importantly, the Gold Award allowed me to make an impact on my community. By completing my project, I know I was able to help kids in my town, within my Girl Scout Service Unit, in Arapahoe County and on a national level. Without the Gold Award, I never would have pursued a project like this, and it is therefore, the culmination of my Girl Scout experience.

**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

GIRL SCOUT GOLD AWARD PROJECT: Sarah Depew, Colorado Springs, “Making Chemistry Fun! A STEM Education Project”

Sarah Depew low res

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

For my Gold Award Project, I addressed the noticeable lack of easy to use, inexpensive, and well-written STEM materials really made available to upper-elementary homeschool educators and students. To positively and meaningfully address this issue, I wrote, tested with homeschool students and parents, and distributed an almost 80-page booklet that includes ten, original chemistry experiments for students along with a parent manual for homeschool educators.

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

In order to measure project impact, I can review the SurveyMonkey survey link I set up for this project and incorporated in the final pages of the parent booklet. Additionally, I can measure my impact from looking at the number of booklets I have distributed over Amazon using Kindle Direct Publishing’s “Reports” feature.

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

By partnering with Colorado’s Academy School District 20, posting my booklet on Amazon using their Kindle Direct Publishing service, and sending a digital copy to the Assistant Director of Youth Education at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, I ensured local and national availability of the project materials. As a result, the project will be sustained beyond my involvement through these three outlets.

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

Two national project connections came in the form of self-publishing the booklet in two parts on Amazon, as eBooks. Additionally, the Houston Museum of Natural Science received a copy of the books and a flash drive for use in their education department. As a result, my project is available on a national eBook distribution website, Amazon, and for use at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, located in Houston, TX, with  robust educational outreach to homeschool students as well as private and public school students in one of the five largest cities in our nation.

What did you learn about yourself?

This project reinforced my passions for learning, teaching, and STEM subjects. Moreover, I discovered I am capable of developing clearly written, engaging, hands on, pertinent, and practical curriculum. This was my first curriculum design experience and completing this project allowed me to round out my communication skills, leadership capabilities, and interpersonal skills, before I went to college.

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

This project gave me new confidence in my leadership abilities. Confidence provided by positive project experiences, I feel, is a vital step on the path towards becoming a capable leader. Through the practice my Gold Award project gave me, I now have developed leadership capabilities I will use my entire life. Skills such as seeking meaningful opportunities to make a positive difference, goal setting, project planning and development, listening to others, seeking partnership and feedback, creativity, commitment, and communication skills. As I go through college and eventually enter the workplace, I will have the chance to apply those capabilities, honing and refining them more completely.

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

As a fourth-generation Girl Scout who has participated in Girl Scouts since I was a Daisy, earning my Gold Award represents my ultimate scouting capstone experience. My Gold Award project grew into so much more than an eighty-hour leadership and service project; rather, this Gold Award capped over a decade of scouting and became a poignant reflection of just how much Girl Scouts has taught me over the years. From leading groups of students to embracing my unique capabilities, from newfound self-confidence in my abilities to make the world a better place to the self-actualization of a personal dream, my Gold Award completed my understanding of what it means to be a Girl Scout and allowed me to thrive as one.

**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

GIRL SCOUT GOLD AWARD PROJECT: Angel Potter, Canon City, “Operation Literacy”

Angel Potter

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

I addressed the issue of underdeveloped reading skills in the community involving children from low-resource families. I had hoped that by donating, working with a children’s center, and giving them books to read and keep that they would become more excited to read. In turn, the Loaves and Fishes Ministries of Fremont County benefited greatly by gaining a newly renovated lobby, including an area for children to play while their parents are in meetings or filling out paperwork.

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

During the project my team and I came across many thanks and encouragement, which I feel made me even more motivated. I received many compliments from the staff, people using the facility, and the community. People who read the story and those who I personally came in contact with would spread the word about my project, and I would hear stories about people donating just to be able to see my work.

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

My project is being continued in a partnership between Loaves and Fishes Ministries of Fremont County and the Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) of Canon City High School. The students of that group, who are being led by Mrs. Deb Crockett, will hold drives throughout the school to donate newer books, toys, or stuffed animals to the shelter, so the children may always have those items to enjoy.

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

My main connection is through Loaves and Fishes’ newsletter that is sent out every quarter to people in the community and further. The newsletter contains before and after photos of my project, and information about what I accomplished. I have sent information about my project to various other shelters in the state encouraging them to do something similar to what I have accomplished. My hope is that shelters and businesses will create an area in their building similar to mine and help more people.

What did you learn about yourself?

I am not quite as shy, I am independent, and I can do whatever I desire! My project brought me out of my comfort zone and helped me learn new things I may have never learned otherwise! I know that sounds cheesy or cliché, but it’s true!

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

On a serious note, it has helped me develop a work ethic, positive attitude, critical thinking process, and many other things that will help me get through college now, and through jobs and life later down the road. It could also lead to scholarships, job opportunities, and many other things!

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

I feel that it was important because I got to see a different side of Girl Scouts. Of course, I love going to camp, the activities like World Thinking Day, or Bridging ceremonies, but the Gold Award was different. It encourages girls to follow through to the end of scouting and to do an amazing project in their community, which is needed even though many people won’t ever know who filled that need. Girls can learn so many things from doing a project on this scale, and I really appreciate the opportunities is has given 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 highestawards@gscolorado.org

GIRL SCOUT GOLD AWARD PROJECT: Kelsey McKenna, Colorado Springs, “Junior Golf Mentorship”

Kelsey McKenna

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

In order to spread publicity for nonprofit junior golf organizations, promote the game of golf, and allow for anyone to pursue golf, I organized a junior golf scramble where older high school golfers came as mentors for younger girls to inspire and exemplify leadership to the younger golfers. Also, I raised enough money for the LPGA/USGA Girls Golf association to afford permanent golf clubs and bags, so that girls who cannot afford clubs can still pursue the game of golf. Last of all, I created a junior golf brochure highlighting the best junior golf organizations in the region as well as the tournaments to promote the game of golf.

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

I measured the impact my Gold Award made on my target audience by witnessing the enjoyment and admiration the younger girls had for their mentors on the tournament day. Also, through the grateful parents that eagerly took my brochures and were made aware of various junior golf organizations they previously didn’t know existed. Not only this, but my impact was clear when the LPGA/USGA Girls Golf Association used their new junior set of golf clubs for the first time at the scramble where a family otherwise wouldn’t have been able to let their children play.

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

My project is sustainable in the golf clubs that can be used by the LPGA/USGA Girls Golf Association season after season for girls who cannot afford clubs. Additionally, I made a “How to Run a Junior Golf Scramble” guide in order for my tournament to easily be run long after I am out of the picture. Last of all, the organization has my Junior Golf Brochure that promotes the major local organizations and can be passed out to promote the game year after year.

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

The global link is the fact that in my project I promoted a lifelong game and encouraged these girls to network, make new friends, meet older girls successful at this game pursuing collegiate college golf, and learn about the game while ensuring that every girl has the ability to partake in it regardless of their family income. Also, the LPGA/USGA Girls Golf Association is a national organization as well as the First Tee and several other organizations that I promoted through the brochure ensuring that no matter where these junior golfers are taken they will always be able to play the game of golf.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned so much about networking and organization from this project. I learned that most people want to see you succeed and will help you out and large organizations, like golf courses, are just made up of people who want to set you up for success. I learned that places like Cherokee Ridge and organizations like the LPGA/USGA Girls Golf Association will help you out and all you needed to do was ask. I developed the ability to make lists of everything that needs to be done for a major project with lots of moving pieces and successfully bring them all together. Also, I learned to trust in the work that I’d done and not stress out the night before because I had planned it well enough to not worry too much. I learned there is nothing more on the planet that I love to do more than help others out and do something for the benefit of others.

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

Earning my Gold Award helps give me the confidence that I can tackle larger tasks and that seemingly impossible projects are doable especially if broken down into smaller steps. This experience will benefit me in the future, because of the lifelong skills I have learned and all the obstacles I was able to overcome to complete this project. Mainly, I know that in the future I will not shy away from a challenge, but am much more able to take on the task and accomplish the goal.

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

The Gold Award was not only an important part of my Girl Scout experience, but an essential part of it, because it encouraged me to step out of my comfort zone and make an impact. It taught me so much and I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to positively impact the world. As a minor, there aren’t many times in your life that you feel you have made an enormous impact on the world, but the Girl Scout Gold Award experience has molded me into the leader I am today and truly helped me make an impact.

**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