Fanwood-Scotch Plains Girl Scouts gathered May 29 to honor girls who had achieved the organization’s highest awards, and to mark the passage of Girl Scouts in the class of 2012 from high school to adulthood.
Three girls from Fanwood-Scotch Plains earned the Gold Award this year. To earn the Gold Award, the highest award in Girl Scouting, a girl must complete a series of prerequisites then design and carry out a Gold Award project which uses her talents and strengths to address a need in the community which she personally cares about. The projects carried out by this year’s recipients reflect their varied interests.
Lindsey Wilkinson educated grammar school students about those with disabilities while providing resources to the children at Specialized Hospital in Mountainside.
Lindsey taught a class at Coles School where crafts were created for donation to CSH. She also enlisted the help of schools, businesses and a local church to collect games and craft supplies that the hospital really needed.
At the end of her project, Wilkinson and two of her friends performed a puppet show for the children at CSH. Her project carries on as a number of teachers at Terrill Middle School are continuing to collect supplies for CSH as part of service projects with their students. Lindsey is a junior at where she is active in a number of activities. She has been a Girl Scout for 12 years.
Carly Whitmer ran a Basic Skills and Foreign Language Enrichment program at Stillman Elementary School in Plainfield. Carly conducted weekly meetings at which she and her friends helped tutor first, second and third graders. They also taught the students words in Latin, French and Italian through the use of posters, skits, props and other fun activities.
On the last week of the project Carly gave each of the children a bag filled with school supplies and snacks. Carly found her project both rewarding and fulfilling, and hopes to return to Stillman next year to repeat the project. Carly has been a Girl Scout for 11 years and is a junior at Mount Saint Mary Academy in Watchung.
Abigail Slaugh focused her project on the importance of keeping a personal history, believing that everyone has an interesting life story and that journaling has many benefits.
Abigail interviewed and recorded the life history of senior citizens living at the Chelsea in Fanwood, transcribed those interviews and gave them back to the interviewees in journal form.
Slaugh also taught classes at a church youth group and the library about keeping a personal history, and worked with elementary students to write and illustrate their own books about a time in their life when they were brave. The books will be published and returned to them.
Abigail is a senior at Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School and will attend Brigham Young University in the fall. She is active in many high school activities and has been a Girl Scout for 13 years.
The ceremony also recognized 21 girls who have completed the Silver Award, the highest award in Cadette Girl Scouts. Two of the 16 Fanwood-Scotch Plains 12th grade Girl Scouts were present to symbolically cross a bridge to adult Girl Scouting as they graduate from high school.
Fanwood-Scotch Plains is one of 138 communities in Girl Scouts Heart of New Jersey, which serves over 25,000 girls and 11,000 adult members in the counties of Hudson, Essex, Union, Somerset, Hunterdon, southern Warren and parts of Middlesex. For more information, call (908) 518-4400 or go tohttp://www.GSHNJ.org.