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Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Amy Nelson, Colorado Springs, “The ABC’s of Eating Healthy&#82


Amy Nelson

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

I created a cookbook that taught the basics of a healthy, nutritious diet while on a small budget. The book included over 90 recipes and ideas for incorporating inexpensive and healthy foods into one’s diet. I worked with programs such as the Elevate Food Pantry and the Care and Share Food Bank to distribute the books to families and individuals across Colorado and beyond to spread awareness of the possibilities of eating healthy with little time and a tight budget.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

I measured the impact of my project by the number of families my book was made available to. 25 physical copies of my book were distributed to the families within the Elevate Food Pantry Program in October. Elevate is a non-profit organization that operates within the area of Cheyenne Mountain School District 12, providing food and snacks to families with children who qualify for free or reduced meals at school. I also sent the digital copy of my cookbook to local libraries, Mary’s Home (a local organization that helps single homeless mothers and their children), and the Care and Share Food Bank, where it was attached to their monthly newsletter and sent to over 300 food banks and soup kitchens across Colorado.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

My project will be sustained beyond my involvement because the cookbooks will be used again and again by the families they were distributed to. Digital copies of my book were also distributed to soup kitchens and food banks across Colorado, who now will be able to print out copies of the book whenever there is demand. I also gave copies to my school and several local libraries so they could be used by anyone interested in my project (or in eating healthier) at any time.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

My project addresses the issue of obesity. This is a massive problem, not only in the United States, but also around the world. Nearly 39% of the adult population of the world is overweight, with 13% of those people qualifying as obese. The only way to lower these numbers is through forming a habit of healthy diet and exercise, and by teaching the benefits of eating healthy to kids so they can keep those lessons with them for the rest of their lives. I was able to spread these lessons by working with Elevate, local libraries, Mary’s Home, and Care and Share Food Program, who helped to distribute my book to many people and families that could learn from them.

What did you learn about yourself?

This project taught me not only about the benefits and importance of maintaining healthy diet, but also more than I thought I would about myself. This project was not an easy task, and took me over 80 hours of research, testing, calculating, creating, assembling, and distributing the books to complete it. It was through this hard work that I realized that I was capable of achieving whatever I set my mind to because I had the skills in communication and organization, as well as persistence and drive within me to overcome the obstacles I faced.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

Earning my Gold Award is a huge honor, and the lessons I have learned from it will continue to help me throughout the rest of my life. My Gold Award taught me not to give up, especially when times get tough and to always remember to budget my time correctly and stay organized when working on a project. Since the Gold Award is such a high honor, earning it has and will also help me in job and scholarship interviews and throughout the application process to college.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

The Gold Award was an important part of my Girl Scout experience because I used so many of the lessons I had learned throughout my Girl Scout career to complete it. Girl Scouts teaches girls across the world to be capable, smart, and hard working individuals. To earn the award, young women must prove that they are all three. The Gold Award is the pinnacle of achievement in Girl Scouts and earning it closes the door from one stage of my life and opens the door for the next, where I will be able to use the lessons Girl Scouting has taught me to make a difference in the world.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org

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