Pelham Examiner

On earning Girl Scouting’s Silver Award: Helping the Humane Society with unique device

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On Nov. 17, 180 girls from the Upper and Lower Hudson Valley received the Girl Scout Silver Award. The award ceremony was held at the Paramount Hudson Valley Theater in Peekskill. The ceremony acknowledged the hard work the young Girl Scouts put into their community service projects. The Silver Award is the second highest award in Girl Scouts. To earn a Silver Award, a Girl Scout must perform 50 service hours in connection with a Girl Scout-sponsored project. Each scout selects a cause for which she has interest in helping and creates a project to help that organization.

This year, I was the only scout from the Village of Pelham to receive the Silver Award. My project was called Dog Waste Bag Dispensers. The dispensers dole out individual plastic bags to make cleaning up after dogs easier. The dispensers are used by volunteers at the Humane Society of Westchester when they walk dogs along routes near the shelter.

I utilized as many recycled materials as possible in designing the dispenser. I used materials that included plastic bags and a variety of large snacking containers to create the dispensers. I also created a unique wrapping technique to fold as many bags into the container so that the bags could be easily removed one at a time.

I completed my project with the support of my troop leader and from my mentor, Patrice Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick is a former Pelham troop leader and has guided many Pelham scouts toward completion of their Silver and Gold awards. I also had the support of Dana Rocco, director of the Westchester Humane Society. Rocco encouraged my dispenser idea, allowed me to instruct volunteers on their construction and assembly, and she has agreed to continue to make dispensers available for walks around the property.

In addition, I made an instructional video on how to make the dispensers and fold bags. The video can be found on youtube.com and with this story. The tutorial has over 800 views and was posted on the Bestbullies.org website. Bestbullies.org was also a big help to me in completing my project. Throughout this project, I learned many skills such as leadership, public speaking and how to be creative on a tiny budget. I look forward to using these same skills to pursue the highest scout honor, the Gold Award.

 

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On earning Girl Scouting’s Silver Award: Helping the Humane Society with unique device