Friday, January 25, 2019

Gold Award Spotlight: Break the Stigma

Girl Scout Kaylee has earned her Gold Award, the highest honor and achievement a girl can earn in Girl Scouts.

For her project, “Break the Stigma,” Kaylee addressed the lack of education and readily available resources surrounding mental health issues. She was determined to find a way to help others achieve positive mental health status.

Kaylee created visibly labeled bookshelves filled with informational pamphlets on mental health for students to bring home to their families in order to start a conversation about the subject. She wanted to erase the stigma surrounding mental health so that more students could become more confident in asking for help. Kaylee also created a public service announcement to be played on the morning announcements at her school to inform the student body of the resources that were in the library.

“Mental health is an issue that impacts my friends and me. Some suffer from anxiety and others from depression,” she said.

Kaylee used her project to inspire others by posting on her social media accounts to start a discussion on mental health with her friends. She also posted the PSA on her YouTube channel for the public to view and posters were placed in participating high schools.

According to Kaylee, the most successful aspect of her project was when she got to help many students who struggled with mental health.

Her project was recognized by National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) with requests to implement in the Virginia Beach Schools.

In addition, Kaylee was honored in April 2019 as Scout of the Year by Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 4809 for the work she has done in her community.