Girl Scouts Of Southern Appalachians’ Gold Awards Uplift East Tennessee

Friday, July 23, 2021
The Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians have announced the 2021 Gold Award recipients in East Tennessee. Twelve of the 29 recipients are from Chattanooga and the surrounding area.

Since 1916, thousands of Girl Scouts across the country have earned the Girl Scouts’ highest honor, now called the Girl Scout Gold Award, for demonstrating extraordinary leadership and making sustainable change in their communities. Nationally, only six percent of all eligible Girl Scouts achieve the Gold Award.

“Our communities have been positively impacted by the vision, leadership and dedication of each of our Gold Award girls,” said Lynne Fugate, CEO of the Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians.
“This high honor required hours of hard work and the leadership skills that they have been developing during their years as a Girl Scout.”

The following Gold Award recipients are from Chattanooga:

Marion Andrews of Signal Mountain addressed school bullying by working with her guidance counselor to create a positive school environment. She researched self-love, body positivity and racism to help identify solutions. Andrews created random notes of encouragement to leave around the school, passed out candy as random acts of kindness, designed educational posters and coordinated multiple speakers. When the pandemic affected in-person school attendance, Andrews created an Instagram account with inspiring quotes and created videos about random acts of kindness.

Carson Bock of Signal Mountain created visitor guidebooks for hospice providers after she experienced a loss and recognized the need to support the families. Each guidebook included restaurant and grocery listings, self-care tips and information about the facility’s technology.

Zoe Brown of Signal Mountain created reusable enrichment boxes for the Chambliss Center for Children that included activities for kids of all ages and levels to enjoy with little guidance. The idea came from the realization of how busy teachers can be at the center and provided a way for children to engage themselves, too.

Margaret Clark of Signal Mountain addressed the high dropout rate in Haitian schools due to poverty by working to create a soccer league that would provide a positive outlet and encouraging community for students. Clark educated her community about the issue and successfully collected more than 300 pounds of lightly used soccer equipment. She partnered with the American Haitian Foundation to transport the equipment.

Zaryiah Clay of Chattanooga worked to alleviate early childhood literacy challenges. Guided by day care and preschool directors, Clay created engaging lesson plans for teachers to use with Pre-K students. The lessons incorporated hands-on activities that resulted in proud students who showed solid progress with their school-readiness skills.

Audrey Coterel of Signal Mountain built a new rebounder wall for the lacrosse practice area in her community to provide an option for players to practice alone or with their teams when field conditions are poor. Coterel partnered with Signal Mountain Lacrosse for ongoing maintenance.

Catherine Gray of Signal Mountain wanted to help children express themselves through music and worked with a local preschool to create a music wall on the playground. The wall featured repurposed materials, so children could create their own expressions of musical sounds.

Hope Hall of Hixson educated and engaged her community about ways to support the ailing bee population. She led two Save a Bee patch workshops at a local sunflower field where attendees could speak with a beekeeper, participate in a scavenger hunt and receive pollinator seeds to take home. Hope distributed educational information throughout the region and created a website with educational resources.

Kymora Kirk of Ooltewah created a Google Classroom and an educational YouTube series to educate young women on the importance of taking care of themselves. She spoke with a pediatrician about common issues that girls should be aware of as they begin puberty. Kirk also created and distributed personal hygiene bags at local girl-focused organizations.

Jiana Weathersby of Athens worked with the Court Appointed Special Advocates Corridor of East Tennessee to support high school-aged girls in juvenile care. With the community’s help, she created gift bags for the young women to show love and support. Weathersby also coordinated resume and job interview training to help build confidence and prepare them to enter the workforce.

Jadyn White of Chattanooga held several virtual dance workshops for young girls who experienced the joy of dance and learned tips on how live healthy. White also launched a YouTube channel to provide access to the dance videos at any time. Girl Scouts who participate in her dance program can earn a special patch for choosing to learn about dance.

Jaia White of Chattanooga led her community in discussions about the negative effects of diabetes and how to prevent the disease and maintain good health. She also launched a website to educate the community and implemented a patch program for Girl Scouts who choose to learn about diabetes.

The Girl Scout Gold Award represents exceptional achievement in leadership development, positive values and service. Only Girl Scout Seniors and Ambassadors are eligible for the Gold Award, and before they can pursue it, they must meet prerequisites, including completing a Take Action Project or earning the Girl Scout Silver Award, which entails a girl-led project to improve the neighborhood or community. 

At a minimum requirement of 80 hours, most girls spend between one and two years on Gold Award projects. A Gold Award Girl Scout’s achievements prime her for the fast track when it comes to college admissions and make her an outstanding candidate for academic scholarships and other financial awards. In addition, Gold Award Girl Scouts who join the armed services even enter at a rank above other recruits.

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