Friday, November 20, 2015

Gold Award Spotlight: Kids Are Sweet Enough Without Sugar

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

For her project, Baillie wrote a cookbook for children with diabetes. The book contains healthy recipes for a variety of meals, as well as interactive pages for children to take notes about their recipes and keep track of what they have cooked and tasted.

“I chose this project because I loved to cook as a child and my favorite book was a cookbook for kids,” Baillie said. “My dad has diabetes and after doing research and finding no books that teach kids with diabetes how to cook for themselves, I knew I had to do something.”

After writing her cookbook, Baillie made presentations to share it with community groups and donated the book to local schools, community centers, food banks and hospitals. She also created informational pamphlets about juvenile diabetes that she left at these locations with her book. She then placed her cookbook online so it is available for anyone to download for free.

Baillie used her Gold Award project as a way to address the issue of lack of education about healthy eating for youth. She wrote and sent letters to her local representatives asking them to consider tax breaks for restaurants that offer a healthy and diabetic-friendly options on their kids menu. She also shared her project with the Virginia Beach Restaurant Association to encourage members to include healthier options on their menus.

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 Baillie to an elite group of female leaders across the country with the honor.