Community service projects involving signs, landscaping, blankets and child safety allowed several local Boy and Girl Scouts to earn high scouting awards this year.
Parker Danielson, a Pioneer Middle School student heading into eighth grade this fall, decided to update directional signs that were once used for Quadrant’s Northwest Landing project in DuPont.
“The old plaques which read ‘Northwest Landing’ were removed and changed to read ‘City of DuPont’. This unifies the city and eliminates divisions between different stages of housing development and reunites all separate housing areas into one city, DuPont,” explained Parker’s mom, Colette Danielson.
The signs pointing to sites that no longer exist were also removed and the city’s web address was also attached to the sign so that citizens and visitors will have the most updated information.
“I wanted to choose a project that would benefit the city where I live, to make it a better place. I am proud to live in DuPont and want to do all I can to make it an even better place to call home,” said Parker, who is a member of Boy Scout Troop 494. His Eagle Scout awards ceremony will probably be in July.
Steilacoom High School student and Girl Scout Troop 40332 member Katie Howard earned the Girl Scout Gold Award with her Child Safety Education and Outreach project.
The Gold Award is the highest award that a Girl Scout can earn.
Katie, who began planning her project a year ago, explained, “Each month I chose a different safety topic such as poison prevention, toy safety, gun safety, internet safety etc. I did events once a month at Tillicum Elementary School where I would do an activity to teach the students in the after school program about the different topics.”
She included topics such as playground safety and the Heimlich maneuver.
“I chose my project because my mom is a social worker, so I’ve heard my fair share of horror stories,” Katie said. “I always feel bad for the families that lose children to preventable accidents. I wanted to educate children and give parents proper resources to keep their kids safe.”
The awards ceremony is planned for the fall, when Katie will be a senior.
Another member of Troop 40332, Nicole Hobbs, will also receive her Gold Award.
Nicole, who will be a senior at Steilacoom High School this fall, launched a four-part campaign to warn students about relationship abuse in teen dating. As part of her campaign, she created posters, a PowerPoint presentation and a video.
“For my project I partnered with the Tacoma YWCA, who presented a role-playing game called ‘In Their Shoes’ to every English class in my school throughout the month of February , which is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month,” Nicole explained.
“I conducted both pre and post surveys. As part of the legacy of my project, I’m trying to install the program into other schools and have the YWCA play the game in my school’s independent living and health classes.”
Nicole began working on her Gold Award in August 2012.
Eight girls in Girl Scout troop 40384 spent 20 hours working on a project for their Bronze Award. The girls, who will be in the fifth grade at Saltar’s Point Elementary this fall, focused on helping those hospitalized and their families.
They made 69 fleece tie blankets to donate to the children in Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital, and held a food and supply drive for the Tree House, a place where families of children hospitalized in Tacoma General Hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit or Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital’s pediatric intensive care unit can stay.
Betsy Harris, who leads the troop with Donna Hilliard, said the girls worked on the project for four months.
Harris said, “The girls voted on project ideas. This project was especially personal for my daughter and I. She had major surgery as a newborn and we stayed in the NICU, PICU, and Mary Bridge medical floors during this time. We were also given help by staying in the parent rooms before Tree House was built.”
The troop members who received the Bronze Award at the Girl Scout Center June 15 are: Mila Allen, Emily Grund, Annelise Hanson, Bella Harris, Gabby Hilliard, Rory McCrum, Jayden Nobles, and JayLynn Williams.
Last but not least, you might notice that Sunnyside Beach in Steilacoom has a new landscaped area thanks to the efforts of Eagle Scout Brett Layer and other members of Boy Scout Troop 494.
A bench and plants line a section of the walkway down to the beach. A plaque indicates that the project was completed in March.