Tag Archives: Palmer Ridge High School

Gold Award Girl Scout: Olivia Tighe, Monument, “Presents for Patriots”

What did you do for your Gold Award project? 

My project, Presents for Patriots, provided military families, who have a family member deployed, gifts for their family during the holiday season and throw a Christmas Party for them all to help relieve the stress of the holiday season.

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

Through a survey created for the families to take on how Presents for Patriots affected their holiday season

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

My project is now going to be an annual program run by the Tri-Lakes Leo Club, in partnership with the Monument VFW Post 7829. They will continue Presents for Patriots with aid from an electronic book with instructions and tips on how to start or continue Presents for Patriots in their area.

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

My national and global link is the fact that we had people from across the country donate gifts through our online registry for our families. We, also with the help from the VFW, were able to purchase gifts for remotely stationed families. We had families who were stationed in the U.S. in, for example, Hawaii, but we also had families stationed around the world in Germany, another example.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned from this project how to efficiently communicate with people and manage my time. Sending many emails to businesses, representatives, and families has taught me the ways of how and when you should send reminders and general emails. I also learned, with my short timeline, how to get a task done in a timely matter.

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

I feel that this will help my leadership skills in the future because of the communication skills I was able to improve due to the amount of emails and public speaking I did. Also, the time management and organization skills I was able to improve will help me fulfill the duties of an army officer, as that these skills are all important to have as an army officer.

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

It really showed me what Girl Scouts is all about, helping others and doing something larger than yourself for others.

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

Earning my Gold Award helped me become an innovator.  An idea that I had, and that my team and I executed, is to collect more gifts from outside of just our area, so we created a registry. This was created on the Walmart website where I could add items that we needed or suggested that people could buy for the kids on the registry. People were able to click what they wanted to buy and purchase it and it would be sent to my house to be organized and wrapped.

**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.

Gold Award Girl Scout: Madelyn Letendre, Colorado Springs, “The Buddies Club”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?                                                                         

For my Gold Award, I created the Buddies Club. The Buddies Club partners a student with disabilities and a non-disabled peer to form a long-lasting friendship, improving social skills and reducing stereotypes. As a club, we tie-dye shirts; play board games; carve pumpkins; and play basketball. The club is a way to foster experiences between students who otherwise would not interact. Through the Buddies Club, students with disabilities are able to foster friendships and, perhaps more importantly, learn interpersonal skills to interact with others in the real world.

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

I administered a survey to all members of the club, both disabled students and Buddies. I asked students with disabilities  if they had gained a friend, if they felt more included in the school, and if they had learned more social skills. I asked Buddies if they had gained a friend, if they were more likely to interact with people with disabilities in the future, and if they had witnessed greater inclusivity in the school. After surveying the Buddies and students with disabilities in my club, there was an overwhelming consensus that the club helped students make new friends and encouraged inclusivity in the school. Students with disabilities felt like they had learned new social skills. Buddies in my club also noted the club had helped encourage all students in my school to be more inclusive, but it had to be an ongoing process to create lasting change. They all said they were more likely to interact with disabled students in the future.

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

My Gold Award will be sustained beyond my involvement as I have guaranteed the continuation of my club. I have signed confirmation from both the next president of the club and the teacher sponsor of the club to continue running and promoting the Buddies Club. Additionally, my website ( https://the-buddies-club.weebly.com/) allows others to create and run the Buddies Club in their communities. I visited other school districts in my community and distributed materials and resources to kickstart Buddies Club programs in those communities.

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

Sixty-percent of students with disabilities report being bullied regularly, the exclusion of students with disabilities is not limited to my school; it occurs in every elementary school, middle school, and high school in America. To address global exclusion in clubs and social aspects of high school, I created a website detailing how to replicate my club. The website streamlined the process of creating a Buddies Club at other schools, easily and concisely communicating my research and my project. Finally, I gave presentations to community members and organizations, spreading my club and website to other communities to kick-start the process in other schools. 

What did you learn about yourself?                                                                                            

This project was an eye-opening experience from start to finish. I have led other community-service projects, but none of this magnitude and difficulty. Although I learned a huge number of skills, like communication and organization, I also learned intrinsic things about myself. Most importantly, I learned about my love for helping others, especially those in the disabled community. Witnessing the differences my project made in my school has encouraged me to pursue a career in healthcare for people with disabilities.

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

Earning my Gold Award has inspired me to further my investment in disability topics throughout college and make a change in the real world. I hope to study biochemistry and pre-medical sciences in college .My current research is an isolated view of disabilities, only considering classroom inclusion. Using the expanded opportunities in college, I can interweave topics about disabilities to investigate medical, social, educational, and political implications. I will apply my education to my community, finding solutions to problems for people with disabilities. 

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

For me, the Gold Award project was the culmination of 12 years of Girl Scouts. The skills that I’ve learned, since being a Daisy, have contributed to my success in this project. I will be graduating high school (and Girl Scouts!) this May. Recieving my Gold Award is a reflection of my incredible and transformative years in scouting.

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

This project helped me become a G.I.R.L. by pushing me to become an innovator. I had to come up with a creative solution to an incredibly complex problem. Through extensive research and planning, I organized a one-of-a-kind club that helps combat the exclusion of students with disabilities. My project also helped me grow in the other three aspects of GIRL (go-getter, risk-taker, and leader), but I feel as though I grew the most as an innovator.

**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: Rebecca Kopacz, Colorado Springs, “I am…”

Rebecca Kopacz

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 highestawards@gscolorado.org