Hanna Walker: 2019 Gold Award Girl Scout

Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce Hanna Walker of North Chili, NY, as a 2019 Gold Award Girl Scout. Walker’s project was titled “Gardens for Owen.”

Walker explained, “My project was located in North Chili at St. Christopher’s Church. I cleaned and re-did four gardens at my church that have always looked liked a disaster. My team and I cleaned, raked, took out, cut down, planted new plants and flowers, added lights and chains, added landscaping fabric and lining, and decorated. I chose this project because a year ago I lost a classmate and friend. Owen rode on my bus, sat in my classes, and went to my church. Seeing him always struggle with disabilities and still persevere through was truly astonishing to me. From him, I was motivated to do this project in his honor to make sure he is always remembered. I had a memorial stone made for Owen that I placed in a garden I called the children’s garden, where I also added a bird bath, birdhouses, and small gnomes to make it more kid-friendly. My hope of this project is to create a beautiful place for my church community where nobody feels alone or forgotten. My goal was to make a difference in the community, and never forget my friend.”

Walker added, “Girl Scouts has opened my heart to everyone and everything. I have done things that I will be proud of for the rest of my life, and will forever choose others over myself.”

Walker will receive her Gold Award at the Gold Award Ceremony on June 1, 2019. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls.

The Gold Award project is the culmination of all the work a girl puts into “going for the Gold.” A Girl Scout’s project should be something that a girl can be passionate about—in thought, deed, and action that encompasses organizational, leadership, and networking skills. The project should also fulfill a need within a girl’s community (whether local or global) and create change that has the potential to be on-going or sustainable. Approximately 80 hours of community service are involved in the project. Completion of the Gold Award also qualifies the Girl Scout for special scholarship opportunities and to enter the military a full rank higher than her peers.

The Girl Scout Gold Award, the most prestigious award in the world for girls, acknowledges the power behind each recipient’s dedication to not only empowering and bettering herself, but also to making the world a better place for others. These young women are courageous leaders and visionary change makers.

The Gold Award requires a Girl Scout to identify an issue and investigate it to understand what can be done to address the problem. The girl then forms a team to act as a support system, including a project advisor close to the issue who is not a troop leader or family member, while she leads the project. The Girl Scout creates a plan to ensure they know what steps they must tackle while working on the project. The Girl Scout submits a proposal for her project to her local Girl Scout council. After acceptance, the girl begins to work through the steps of their plan utilizing the assistance of her support team where necessary. Lastly, the project is used to educate and inspire others about the cause they are addressing.

To learn more, visit gswny.org.

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