Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce Morgan Schaefer of Williamsville, NY, as a 2021 Gold Award Girl Scout. Morgan is from Troop 30970 and has been a member of Girl Scouts for 12 years.
What Morgan said about Girl Scouts
Girl Scouts has made me a better leader and organizer in most aspects of my life. It has taught me how to work closely with others to accomplish a goal. Most importantly, it has given me friendships and memories that will last a lifetime.
Project: WNY Veteran’s Awareness
My project had two halves with slightly different goals. First, I created an art piece that will be displayed at DeGlopper Memorial Park in Grand Island, NY. The focus of my project was to honor and bring recognition to the sacrifices that the men and women who serve our country make every day. The other half of my project involved the creation of a website database of veterans charities in Western New York, with the goal of raising awareness for the struggles veterans face beyond active duty and encouraging those struggling to seek help.
I worked with local veterans, the DeGlopper Memorial Park management team (and others through them), and some people from the Veterans Affairs (VA) to accomplish this project. I chose this project focus because my country is incredibly important to me, and I believe those who dedicated their lives to serving it deserve the utmost respect and support. I wanted to give back to local veterans while also raising civilian awareness on the subject.
My project not only contributes to a local monument, but also raises awareness of the sacrifices that all veterans have made. The website database aims to help veterans access the services they need once they return to civilian life. In detail, I drew a large picture depicting veterans of past and present to be featured at DeGlopper Memorial Park, and I worked with people from the park team and a local printing company throughout the printing process. I also used my knowledge of HTML to code the website database by hand, and personally reached out to primary sources to help me gather appropriate organizations for my database.
About the Gold Award
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 she can enlist in the military at a higher starting pay grade.
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.
For more information on the Gold Award, click here.