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Girl Scout Troop 485 fully recognized 4 of their members by holding a formal Gold Award Ceremony on December 18, 2016. The Gold Award recipients were, Kate Hofmeister, Karina Lall, Katie Murray and Alexandria Tedeschi. 

2016 was the 100th anniversary of the Gold Award, so we celebrate a century of girls changing the world!  Our Gold Award recipients completed their Bronze and Silver awards along with a Leadership Journey before beginning their Gold Award Take Action project. The Gold Award is given to a scout who demonstrates ability and skill in goal setting, planning, putting values into action and relating to the community. The scout must complete a community service project with a minimum of 80 hours of work to qualify for the award. The Gold Award is the highest honor for a Girl Scout senior or ambassador and only 3.7 percent of eligible Girl Scouts nationwide successfully earn this distinguished award.

While earning this award, girls explore possible careers, practice public speaking, improve communication skills, research and share their knowledge and often gain practical life skills such as learning to use a new piece of technology. Earning this award truly represents an incredible undertaking and a great learning experience.

Katie Murray – Katie was the first young lady in Troop 485 to complete her Gold Award. Katie worked with Boys and Girls Club to help preteens with self-confidence and self-esteem. Katie spent around 100 hours brainstorming, planning, and performing a project to help these girls. During the summer, she hosted a week-long dance camp for a group of preteen girls, where she taught them a dance she had choreographed herself. Sometime during each day of this camp, she would lead them in self-esteem boosting exercises. Finally, Katie created an opportunity for the young ladies to perform their new dance skills and show their friends and family everything they had worked on.

Karina Lall – The next young lady in our troop to complete her Gold project was Karina Lall.  Karina worked with Frisco Family Services to enhance their food pantry volunteer check in process, redesign the check in station and created a more appealing break room. The food pantry has approximately 3900 clients and 1700 volunteers come through every year. Now that Karina has made the volunteer check in process more efficient, the food pantry is able to serve more clients.

Kate Hofmeister – Our 3rd young lady to complete her Gold project is Kate Hofmeister. Kate completed her Girl Scout Gold Award by creating a volunteer training video for the Rays of Light organization. Rays of Light is dedicated to providing free, quality respite care to families with children with special needs. With this new tool volunteers are less nervous and more prepared to take care of a special needs child. This is important because many new volunteers who have never worked with special needs children before are afraid and do not know what to expect. The video not only shows you around the facilities, but tells you the rules and answers to some common questions. Having a volunteer training video ensures that every volunteer comes into the organization with a knowledge of what to do and where to go. 

Alex Tedeschi – Our final young lady to complete her Gold project is Alex Tedeschi.  Alex completed her Girl Scout Gold Award by building a large 700 plus library and game center at the Genesis Shelter. Annie's House, a part of Genesis Shelter, is a safe haven for victims of domestic violence. Women and their children will stay at the shelter for months. During this time having a form of entertainment and education is important. Alex realized these residents did not have a collection of books and games at their disposal. Alex spent over 125 hours brainstorming, planning, leading volunteers in cataloging the items into an electronic check in/out system, organizing the products on site and training the staff. Since the completion of the library, Genesis has asked Alex to become a member of their teen board, STAR. Students Tackle Abusive Relationships, Preston Hollow People newspaper interviewed her and Julie Hofmeister, her troop leader, for an article and Fox 4 News has honored Alex as a Hometown Hero. 

These girls have shown they are committed to working toward the goals they set for themselves and improving the world around them. These ladies have dedicated tremendous amounts of energy to discovering the needs in our communities, connecting with experts and volunteers and taking action to create true and meaningful change in our world. They are amazing leaders.

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