NEWTOWN, Conn. -- In celebration of the Gold Award Centennial, Grace Anne Herrick from Newtown was one of eight girls from across the country selected by Girl Scouts of the USA to travel to Washington, D.C., to mark the occasion.
During the Capitol Hill celebration, more than 200 leaders from government, the military, and academia came together to recognize and honor the girls and women who have earned the Gold Award over the past century.
The only Girl Scout from Connecticut at the event last week, Herrick put her Gold Award project on display. Her project addressed two issues: the lack of education and lack of health for children under 5 who live in rural Nakaseke, Uganda.
She developed an early education program for the children of Uganda with the help of ACCESS (African Community Center for Cultural Sustainability). The community is so excited about the program that there is a waiting list. She will be fundraising as an adult to build a school where more families can participate.
“Being chosen to exhibit my Gold Award Project at the Girl Scouts Capitol Hill Celebration in Washington, D.C., is an honor and I look forward to this opportunity to take action, to educate and inspire others to act, and it makes me feel empowered to make a difference in the world,” she said.
“I’m very thankful and fortunate Girl Scouts of Connecticut believed in my Gold Award Project and never made me feel like what I wanted to do was impossible," she added.
“We are so proud of all our girls who have earned their Gold Awards and taken their places alongside a century of amazing women,” said Mary Barneby CEO of Girl Scouts of Connecticut. “We were thrilled Grace was able to join our leaders in Congress to mark this important milestone and represent our other incredible Gold Award recipients being recognized for the work they have done as they carry forward the tradition and the legacy of 100 years of our highest award.”
U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-3rd District) also joined Herrick at the event. DeLauro is the official spokeswoman for the Gold Award Centennial for Girl Scouts of Connecticut.
They were also joined at the event by Girl Scouts’ National CEO Anna Maria Chávez and National Board President Kathy Hopinkah Hannan.
Speakers included Brig.-Gen. Diana Holland, commandant of cadets at the U.S. Military Academy, and Patricia McGuire, president of Trinity Washington University, which awards scholarships to Gold Award recipients.
The Gold Award is the highest award a girl can earn in Girl Scouting. The Gold Award has been earned by 1 million Girl Scouts since 1916.
The Girl Scout Gold Award requires girls to plan and implement individual projects that take months or even years to complete. Above all, a girl’s project must have a demonstrably sustainable and lasting benefit for her larger community.
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