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Katie Murray, 16, a student at Ursuline Academy of Dallas, and a member of Girl Scout Troop 485 recently completed her Girl Scout Gold Award by helping preteens with self-confidence and self-esteem. At the Boys and Girls Club, a nationwide organization with Clubs all around the city of Dallas and throughout our country, kids of all ages are provided a safe place to learn and grow while their parents are working. During Katie's time with the youth she noticed some of the kids, especially girls, suffered from self-confidence and self-esteem issues. Katie spent around 100 hours brainstorming, planning, and performing a project to help these girls. She decided since she was involved in her school dance team, the Jesuit Rangerettes, and found so much comfort in dance, that she wanted to share it with the girls who looked like they needed something to be passionate about. Katie claims that, “dance not only keeps you entertained and active, but is a good boost for your confidence.” 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. She says, “by the end of the week, [she] could definitely see an improvement in the confidence and happiness of the girls." 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. 

Katie has been a member of Girl Scouts since 1st grade and says the program has taught her valuable life skills. "I realized my potential for making a small difference in the world," she said. "Girl scouts showed me that it is important to work hard for my goals and issues I believe in.  It also helped me to strengthen my communication and leadership skills. My experience in Girl Scouts helped me to learn how to work as a member of a team and encouraged me to do things that I might not have otherwise done."

The Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest award a Girl Scout can earn, combines leadership development, career exploration and community service.  It culminates in an 80 plus hour leadership project that each girl plans and executes according to her own interest and passions. Each girl must discover an issue in the community, connect with experts and community members, and take action to effect positive change. 

For more information about Girl Scouts, call Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas at 972-349-2400. Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas is 26,600 girls and 12,500 adult members strong. That's nearly 40,000 girls and adults who believe every girl can change the world! We have girls reaching their fullest potential in 32 northeast Texas counties. Our girls are discovering what’s important to them, connecting with their community, and taking action to make the world a better place!

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