Friday, October 16, 2015

Gold Award Spotlight: Stories We Tell

Virginia Beach Girl Scout Leslie has earned the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest honor and award a girl can earn in Girl Scouting.

For her project, Leslie sought to capture the stories of local citizens who reside at The Gardens of Virginia Beach, a senior living facility. She interviewed 13 residents about their childhood, education, family life, jobs, historical events they may have witnessed and life lessons they would like to share. Leslie then transcribed the interviews and compiled them in a book that she provided to the participants, their family members and other members of the community.

“My project gave people the opportunity to pass down their family history and the lessons they learned in life,” Leslie said.

To share her project with the community, Leslie created a display about her project that she placed at the Bayside Library. She also created a website where she placed the interview questions that she used so that others could replicate her project at senior living facilities across the country. Additionally, she placed the interview questions in a binder at The Gardens of Virginia Beach for residents to continue to add their stories to the book.

In order to make a further impact on the residents at The Gardens of Virginia Beach, Leslie enlisted the help of her fellow troop members to host games and sing Christmas carols at The Gardens, as well as create holiday cards for the residents.

The Gold Award requires girls to identify an issue in their community and carry out a Take Action project to address the matter through leadership work. Nationwide, less than 6 percent of eligible Girl Scouts earn the Gold Award, which adds Leslie to an elite group of female leaders across the country with the honor.