~ Submitted by Bedford-Hanscom Troop 71763
While many of us discovered new television series and books in the early days of the pandemic, two Bedford Girl Scouts completed their Gold Award, the highest award in Girl Scouting. Calista Barber and Gabriella Fournier were awarded citations from the Massachusetts General Assembly by Representative Ken Gordon on Wednesday, June 22 honoring their hard work.
The Girl Scout Gold Award is a culmination of several years of work. To even start on the award, the girls must have completed the Silver Award and a Journey or two Journeys. Girl Scout journeys are an in-depth study of a topic that is equivalent to 3 badges and a sustainable service project. Both Barber and Fournier had completed their Silver Award in9th grade and worked on a journey with the troop in the 10th and 11th grades. For the Gold Award project, a scout must find a need of the community, plan a sustainable way to address that need, create a team of support, have the project approved by the local council, and finally, carry out the project.
Not surprisingly, both girls chose projects that addressed the problem of stress among their peers and younger Bedford students. Barber addressed the issue at Bedford High School. She created a Zen Den in the high school for kids to take a break and relax as needed. Working with the administration, she converted a space for students and also hosted a yoga class for beginners over zoom. This Zen Den will continue to be used as a calming place for high school students. Fournier addressed the stress at younger ages. She worked with kids at Lane School using her skills in artwork to use art to help students address their stress, and learn constructive ways to address stress in the future. Fortunately, the hands on-time with students happened in February, giving the students skills to help them in the early days of the pandemic.
Due to the pandemic, the citations were awarded at the Bedford Library instead of the State House. Fournier, a St. Anslem College student majoring in Spanish, received her citation in person from Rep. Ken Gordon. Barber, a University of Toronto student majoring in Psychology, was in Canada and her award was accepted by her parent, Venus Ho. Both of the co-leaders for Bedford-Hanscom Troop 71763 were on hand to give Fournier her Gold Award.