On December 19th, a group of dedicated 6th - 9th grade Girl Scouts, from the Woodinville Service Unit #409, gathered for a recognition ceremony their achievement of the Girl Scout Bronze and Silver Awards. The two awards are part of a series of Girl Scout’s highest awards, with the Girl Scout Gold Award being the ultimate achievement. The girls who gathered in December had completed their projects as Girl Scout Juniors (4th - 5th grade) and Girl Scout Cadettes (6th - 9th grade). When asked to reflect on their service projects, they said the big projects can be “scary,” take lots of “perseverance,” but “impacting your community” is ultimately “fun.”
For inspiration, the 17 girls listened to Lynn Colella, a long-time, active member of Girl Scouts and local winner of the 1972 Silver medal in Olympic swimming, about how Girl Scouts impacted her to become a leader and never give up on your aspirations. Lynn paved the way for girls in her era by defying stereotypes at a time when “girls weren’t supposed to get muscles” – something that is key to becoming an Olympic champion and going on to earn a degree in electrical engineering – even though young women didn’t get scholarships in those days.
Just over 5 percent of Girl Scouts nationwide earn the Girl Scout Gold Award, a recognition that celebrated its 100th year in 2016. Starting in 1916, the award was developed originally as the “Golden Eaglet” and has been renamed over its history to be known simply as the Gold Award. The Gold award is achieved only by high school-aged girls who embark on a rigorous, sustainable service project to benefit a local community.