NORTH SALEM, N.Y. – Six North Salem teens have earned their Girl Scouts Gold Awards, the highest achievement in the Girl Scout movement, equivalent to the Eagle Scout award in Boy Scouts.
The honors were presented at a brunch held by the Girl Scouts Heart of the Hudson Council at the Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel on Saturday.
Of the 84 young women honored across a seven-county expanse, the fact that six were from North Salem “was a really big deal,” said North Salem Supervisor Warren Lucas. “It speaks greatly of the quality and dedication of our young women and also the adult leadership in our town’s Girl Scout troops.”
The North Salem honorees and their projects are:
- Claire Diehl, Troop 2678, introduced kids to the fun and creativity of engineering with her project, “Techno Teams.” She held 18 activities at a local engineering expo, covering six engineering topics.
- Cassandra Gizzo, Troop 2678, designed and painted a large mural in support of art appreciation and was active in the art program at the Westchester Exceptional Children’s School, hosting an art fair and collecting donations of art supplies.
- Maren Jasperson, Troop 2678, created the “Kids Who Care Club” at Pequenakonck Elementary School, teaching children how to perform community service. The students completed eight service projects during the school year.
- Elizabeth Rich, Troop 2678, taught children in a project called, “Poetry: Food for the Soul.” She led them in playing poetry games, reading fun poems, learning writing skills and compiling their works in a book.
- Phoebe Coughlin, Troop 2246, organized “Penpals Across the USA,” to connect girls and boys across the country with military troops to show their support. “In a modern era where written communication is often forgotten, she brought people together to share positive stories, encouragement, anecdotes and support,” said Lucas.
- Catherine Devey, Troop 2246, collected more than 1,000 books from the North Salem community, then transported and distributed them to needy families in Appalachia. She also held a lunchtime book club at Pequenakonck Elementary School and created a secure blog for book discussions among local kids and their counterparts in Virginia. In addition, she created and implemented evening story times for the preschool children at the North Salem Nursery School.