Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce Melissa Zolnowski of Cheektowaga, NY, as a 2022 Gold Award Girl Scout. Melissa is a member of Troop 30491.
What Melissa said about Girl Scouts
Girl Scouts taught me life lessons, leadership, and independence. I’ve also made lifelong friends which have become my family.
Project: Helping The Animals
For my Gold Award, I collected donations of blankets, dog and cat toys, fabric, kitty litter, and food items for the SPCA. With the donated material I spent many hours sewing blankets and pillowcases for the animals. I sewed pillow cases from scratch, but I needed to be taught how to sew. I knew nothing about sewing and creating pillowcases before this project so I learned a new skill. I learned how to be a better communicator and how to talk confidently on the phone.
The reason I chose this project was because of the scared animals waiting for adoption. The animals came from different places or were rescued from broken families. They deserve to be treated kindly and to be spoiled. I wanted the animals in the shelter to have comfort items while waiting for new owners. I rescued my dog from the SPCA and when I was there I noticed the animals had a lack of toys. I wanted the animals to have their own toys for the shelter.
About the Girl Scout 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.