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2021 Gold Award Girl Scouts

Congratulations to the 2021 Gold Award Girl Scouts!

 

South Region

Anvi Arora | Mason, OH

Anvi is a graduate of Mason High School and attends Purdue University, majoring in Engineering.  She was involved in Model UN, National Honor Society, and Orchestra. Anvi has been a Girl Scout for 8 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards.

AN ISSUE IN THE SHADOWS: HUMAN TRAFFICKING AWARENESS & ACTION

After learning that Ohio has one of the highest rates of human trafficking cases in the country, Anvi wanted to raise awareness and take action to change this. She organized an in person event and virtual panel discussions, with speakers including representatives from Procter & Gamble and Ohio’s Human Trafficking Taskforce. Anvi also created educational materials, which she distributed through the public libraries, reaching over 300 people. Anvi worked with Mason Public Schools, which will add lesson plans that Anvi developed into their high school social studies curriculum. By sharing her findings & recommending next steps with Procter & Gamble, Anvi not only educated her own community, but inspired a global company to take action against human trafficking.

Sarah Beck | Cincinnati, OH

Sarah is a sophomore at Indian Hill High School. She is involved in voice lessons, field hockey, and track.  Sarah has been a Girl Scout for 10 years.

POLLINATOR GARDEN

When Sarah learned about the importance of pollinator gardens to her local ecosystem, and that many insects that rely on these plants were in decline, she decided to take action. Sarah worked with Symmes Township Park to designate a space for the new pollinator garden. She organized a group of volunteers to help her plan and build a garden, carefully selecting the right native plants to ensure it would be easy to maintain for years to come by the park staff. The garden is now complete with signs around it to educate visitors about the types of pollinators featured in the garden, and their importance to the ecosystem. The garden has been so successful that Symmes Township is making plans to build similar gardens in more of their parks. 

Hannah Kuderer | Cleves, OH

Hannah is a senior at Mercy McAuley Hill High School. She is involved in National Honor Society, Bowling Team, and Women Lead Technology. Hannah has been a Girl Scout for 13 years.

FOOD ALLERGY FOCUS

After being diagnosed with food allergies in fourth grade, Hannah felt there wasn’t enough support out there for kids living with severe food allergies. Many of her peers whom did not have allergies were unaware of the dangers food allergies could pose to those who have them. Hannah created a website called Food Allergy Focus that aims to educate those without food allergies on how to identify symptoms of an allergic reaction, how to administer an Epi-pen, and more. The website also includes support for those living with food allergies.

Terribithia Schuler | Batavia, OH

Terribithia is a junior at Clermont Northeastern High School. She is involved in Choir, Academic Quiz Team, and Digital Art. Terribithia has been a Girl Scout for 11 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards.

TOUCHABLE ART

Terribithia noticed that people who are visually impaired often do not feel welcome at art museums, which are designed for people who are sighted. After researching, she decided to create touchable versions of several art pieces featured at the Cincinnati Art Museum to provide a way for the visually impaired to enjoy the museum. After coordinating with the Art Museum to select and create touchable representations of art pieces, she hosted an event at the museum to unveil the touchable art, and visitors could make their own mini versions. Her touchable art pieces are now featured as part of tours for people with disabilities at the Cincinnati Art Museum.

Lauren Sewell | Cincinnati, OH

Lauren is a senior at Indian Hill High School. She is involved in Volleyball, DECA, and JSA. Lauren has been a Girl Scout for 13 years and earned her Silver Award. 

STEPPING STONES AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE CURRICULUM

Lauren has been a volunteer at Stepping Stones, a camp for children with disabilities for many years. Through her time there, she noticed despite there being many hearing impaired campers, the staff and volunteers were not taught sign language, which often made these campers frustrated when they couldn’t communicate with anyone. Lauren created her own basic sign language curriculum, including both videos and a comprehensive manual that will be used by Stepping Stones camp for their annual training, and can be used by any camp with hearing impaired campers.  

Katherine Zimmerman | Cleves, OH

Katherine is a senior at Saint Ursula Academy. She is involved in karate, theater, and horse riding. Katherine has been a Girl Scout for 13 years. 

MENTAL HEALTH

Katherine noticed many of her peers were struggling with their mental health, felt alone, and did not have the resources to get the help they needed. Katherine decided to take action to break the stigma on mental health by educating her peers about mood disorders. She created a video presentation discussing the causes of mood disorders, how to respond to someone in a mental health crisis, and how to find help if you are experiencing these symptoms. Katherine’s goal in sharing her message is to empower people to get help when they need it. Her video will be shown at the beginning of each school year at St. Ursula Academy, and continues to be available on the student internet to provide ongoing support to students.

 

Central Region

Kaitlyn Cook | Beavercreek, OH

Kaitlyn is a graduate of Beavercreek High School and attends Liberty University majoring in Biochemistry. She was involved in National Honor Society, marching band, and track and field. At Liberty, she is in AFROTC. Kaitlyn has been in Girl Scouts for 12 years and earned her Silver Award.  

BAGS OF HOPE

Kaitlyn is very passionate about aiding the homeless population. After going on several mission trips with her youth group at Hope Church, she decided to create “bags of hope” to hand out to the homeless population in Dayton. She made 100 bags that contained a bible, blanket, mask, journal, pen, water, nutritional bars, and a brochure with information about where to get shelter, nourishment and employment. Kaitlyn wrote a personal inspirational letter that was in included in each bag. Kaitlyn, along with her mother, personally handed out each bag to a homeless individual in downtown Dayton, often praying with them to give them hope. Her church youth group will continue her project.

Megan Fahrenkamp | Dayton, OH

Megan is a graduate of Centerville High School and attends The Ohio State University majoring in Chemical Engineering. She was involved in National Honor Society, volleyball and Science Olympiad. Megan has been in Girl Scouts for 14 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Award.

CLIENT COOKBOOK FOR THE DAYTON FOODBANK

Megan was inspired by her passion for cooking and helping people. She worked with The Dayton Foodbank and analyzed their spoilage reports from the donations they received. She then created easy to follow recipes that focused on the least popular donated foods and used only ingredients that the foodbank distributes. For instance, eggplant and chickpeas are two of the most unpopular items. Megan combined all the recipes into a cookbook that was provided to each food pantry. She also made recipe cards to distribute along with the unpopular items. This will ensure the recipients of the food can truly use the help they are given, while the foodbank can reduce their losses and continue to make a substantial impact on hunger.

Chloe Fletcher | Beavercreek, OH

Chloe Fletcher is a senior at Beavercreek High School. She is involved in Fellowship of Christian Athletes (Vice President), swim team and ultimate frisbee team. She has been a Girl Scout for 11 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards. 

FOOD THROUGH KEYSTONE

As a member of the youth group at Keystone Baptist Church in Kettering, Chloe saw the need for a food pantry in her community. With the church’s blessing, she cleaned out an unused space and built a food pantry from scratch. Chloe’s inspiration was her grandparents who volunteered at the Beavercreek FISH food pantry for years. She spent many hours helping her grandpa working in the food pantry and delivering food. With her grandfather’s help, Chloe built new shelving and repaired and painted donated shelves. She organized three food drives to help stock the pantry with food, diapers, and toiletries. Chloe planned and facilitated a training program for 14 volunteers who donate their time at the food pantry. Currently, the pantry is open two Saturdays a month.

Caroline Howley | Beavercreek, OH

Caroline is a senior at Beavercreek High School. She is involved in National Honor Society, cross country and track. She has been a Girl Scout for 12 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Award.

LIBRARY RESTORATION

Springfield Christian School (Pre-K through 8th grade) has a library that has been neglected for several years and needs a makeover. Caroline set out to completely restore the library. She sorted through all the old library books and discarded those that were damaged or too worn. Caroline had a large team who helped her clean out the library. She held two book drives and collected over 2,500 books! The biggest part of her project was sorting and tagging the books.  Caroline freshened up the room with a new sofa and a large canvas mural she painted herself. Her goal was to make the library a more inviting and cheerful place for children to visit. Caroline’s inspiration is her love of reading and she hopes her project will inspire children for years to come. 

Emily Manuel | Lima, OH

Emily is a senior at Shawnee High School. She is involved in youth group, stage crew, and volleyball. Emily has been a Girl Scout for 13 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards.

TRIBE TUTORS

Emily created and coordinated an afterschool program focused on the mentoring and teaching of middle school students with high school student volunteers. After receiving permission from school administrators, Emily recruited and trained high school students as tutors, organized the after school sessions, and worked with teachers to recruit middle school students to the program. She evaluated the success of her tutors with monthly meetings and the impact on the student who participated through quarterly evaluations of scholarly improvements. Between teachers, tutors, administrators, parents, and students, seventy people were involved in this program. The program will continue at the school with a teacher taking over its coordination. 

Noelle Massarelli | Beavercreek, OH

Noelle is a sophomore at Beavercreek High School. She is involved in Marching Band (flute) and High School Girl Scout Club. She has been a Girl Scout for 9 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Award. 

RUSS NATURE RESERVE PLAYSCAPE PROJECTS

In May 2019, Russ Nature Reserve was heavily damaged during an outbreak of tornados in the Dayton area. Noelle wanted to restore the PlayScape and add new features. Some of the restoration she did included a new Playscape sign, checker board set, and sail canopies for shade since the trees were gone. There was a neglected play grocery store that Noelle made wooden food items. She painted, glued, and sprayed labels from real packages. There were three log drums still standing. To improve the sound, she shaved off bark and made one log drum handicap accessible.  Once the project was completed, she held an open house that was well attended. Her inspiration is due to her love of the outdoors and a playground completely made out of nature.

Kierstyn Oberdorf | Houston, OH

Kierstyn is a senior at Houston High School. She is involved in Future Farmers of America, a Supervised Agricultural Experience (job shadowing veterinarians), and is Co-Editor of the yearbook. Kierstyn has been a Girl Scout for 13 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards. 

SHELBY COUNTY ANIMAL SHELTER AGILITY COURSE

For her Gold Award, Kierstyn wanted to impact the abundance of dogs in her local shelter and help them find forever homes. Understanding the connection between well trained and regularly exercised dogs and higher adoption rates, Kierstyn worked with the dog warden at the local humane society to plan out an agility course that the trainer can use to help dogs learn basic commands such as sit, lay down, and stay. Kierstyn approached local businesses to sponsor the agility course and was able to secure funding to build five obstacles. Having access to the course and its exercise capabilities have resulted in the shelter’s dogs being better trained and an increase in adoptions since its installation.

Gwendolyn Peters | Kettering, OH

Gwendolyn is a graduate of Kettering Fairmont High School and attends Miami University majoring in Social Work. She was involved in marching band, National Honor Society and student teaching. She was in Girl Scouts for 13 years and earned her Bronze and Silver awards. 

HOPE ROCKS

Gwen created a rock garden at Hospice of Dayton to give children a tangible way to grieve. Children who lost loved ones could paint rocks for the garden, allowing them comfort and understanding around the idea of death and become more secure in their own grief. Gwen was trained to facilitate the art cart at  hospice to help children express their grief through art therapy. During the pandemic, Gwen was a counselor at a camp for grieving children held at Camp Kern. She had eight campers for eight weeks and was one of the first adults to allow children to speak openly about the virus. As a result of her project, Gwen made the decision to major in social work, so she could continue to help children in need. 

Corinna Ress | Beavercreek, OH

Corinna is a junior at Beavercreek High School. Corinna is in marching band and JROTC (Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps). She has been in Girls Scouts for 11 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards. 

FORGE YOUR OWN TRAIL

Fox Run Park in Beavercreek was overgrown, rundown and unused. Corinna, with the help of her team, set out to establish a wider path approximately 0.81 miles in length. The park is divided into a wooded section and a prairie section. She widened the wooded section and created and mulched the trail through the prairie. Along the way, Corinna installed trail markers to guide hikers along the path. She identified and marked 13 notable trees with plaques, including a 300+ year old Chinquapin Oak. The park now provides a place for the community to enjoy the surrounding nature. The identification signs encourage hikers to learn more about trees they might have in their own backyard. Furthermore, the reestablished trail system provides a place to spend time with family and friends. 

Katherine Ress | Beavercreek, OH

Katherine is a junior at Beavercreek High School. She is in JROTC (Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps) and marching band. She has been in Girl Scouts for 11 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards. 

FIND YOUR FEARLESS

Lofino Park in Beavercreek is divided into a wooded land in the north and developed land in the south. Katherine, along with her team, developed a usable trail (0.3 miles) that runs from the wooded north through a creek and gives easy access to the paved trail in the south. She installed 13 posts to help guide people along the trail and removed a broken bridge across a creek. Katherine installed stepping stones to help hikers safely cross the creek. She also created a children’s nature play area along the path. The play area includes hopscotch, a lean-to (made with 10-foot-long branches), and a swing. Katherine created a climbing tree by drilling safety handles on the tree. The trail is open to anyone who wishes to have someplace new to explore and enjoy.

Emily Schafer | Bradford, OH

Emily is a junior at Covington High School. She is involved in cross country, track, and dance. Emily has been a Girl Scout for five years and earned her Silver Award.

CIVIL WAR HEADSTONE REPLACEMENT

Emily coordinated with the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) and her city council to replace six damaged & worn Civil War headstones at a local cemetery. This endeavor required that she research each soldier and submit paperwork to the VA before approval was given for her team of volunteers to physically replace the damaged headstones. Emily hosted a rededication ceremony at the cemetery with a local pastor leading prayer and members of the American Legion presenting a twenty-one gun salute. She also created a YouTube video about her project and the local library featured her rededication ceremony and her video on their website to educate the community about the importance of preserving and honoring our fallen heroes.

 

North Region

Sarah Dollman | Toledo, OH

Sarah is a graduate of Cardinal Stritch High School and attends the University of Toledo, majoring in Early Childhood Education. She is a member of the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians. Sarah has been a Girl Scout for 13 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards.

RENOVATING HISTORIC ST. PATRICK'S FOOD PANTRY

Touring the Historic St. Patrick’s Food Pantry, Sarah noticed much of the space was unusable due to items stacked around haphazardly. When Sarah spoke to the workers, she learned they hoped future renovations would help with organizing the pantry. Sarah knew this was her opportunity to help. Working with the Ancient Order of Hibernians for funding and other donations for shelving and cabinets, Sarah led a demolition team to clear and renovate the space. Sarah also created an inspirational mural, and provided the pantry with a new system to organize their food and goods.

Eva McGinnis | Kansas, OH

Eva is a graduate of Lakota High School and attends Owens Community College, majoring in Early Childhood Education. She was involved in marching band, basketball, and Girl Scouts. Eva has been a Girl Scout for 12 years and earned her Silver Award.  

DONATING ART & CRAFT SUPPLIES FOR CHILDREN IN HOMELESS SHELTERS

For her project, Eva wanted to provide educational enrichment for children experiencing homelessness. Eva decided to create art kits for local shelters, as well as individual kits for children to take with them when they leave. Working with the Liberty Center in Fremont and the Morrison House in Tiffin, Eva created a curriculum with twenty-five different crafts the children could do and provided kits for the shelters. These kits were easy to store and transport if children continued to have unstable housing. Due to Covid-19, the art classes that Eva planned to run were reworked into videos for the shelter to show. Eva donated two supply cabinets full of supplies so the shelter would be able to continue providing enrichment opportunities. 

Gwyneth Martz | Fort Jennings, OH

Gwyneth is a junior at Ottoville High School/Vantage Career Center. She is involved in band, weightlifting, and track and field. Gwyneth has been a Girl Scout for 12 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards.

USING QR CODES TO MODERNIZE THE PUTNAM COUNTY MUSEUM

For her project, Gwyneth worked in partnership with the Putnam County Museum to find ways to increase traffic. Her solution was to modernize the museum through QR codes that link visitors to videos explaining the exhibits. In determining what exhibits to create videos for, Gwyneth worked closely with the museum board and received feedback through surveys. She worked one on one with local historians to create engaging videos that preserved local knowledge. Gwyneth was in the middle of her project when Covid-19 restrictions started in the state. Her perseverance, problem solving skills, and leadership helped her to complete her award. Her hope for her project is that more people will know that history can be fun and enjoyable.

Brooke Kortokrax | Ottoville, OH

Brooke is a senior at Ottoville High School. She is involved in golf, cheerleading, and softball. Brooke has been a Girl Scout for 8 years and earned her Bronze and Silver Awards. 

CORONAVIRUS FACE MASKS

During the April 2020 face mask shortage, Brooke put her sewing skills to use to help make masks for the public. Her team was able to make 350 masks. The demand in the area was high at the time, and was almost more than Brooke could keep up with. The masks were free for the public and customizable for all face sizes. When the elastic shortage impacted production, Brooke got creative, figuring out other ways to make straps, such as using fabric or hair ties. Brooke also created a poster about the importance of following Covid-19 safety guidelines to inform her community about proper mask usage and its importance in preventing the spread of Covid-19.