Earning Gold

Carlsbad residents Proma Dewanjee, Alexis Durant, Sophia Ilas, Avalon Johnson, Hannah Lange, Madison Ma, Katherine Monko, Elyse O’Neill, and Miya Scheble have earned Girl Scout Gold Awards for their outstanding leadership and commitment to taking action in their community. The Gold Award is the highest achievement in Girl Scouting; just five percent of Girl 15Scouts nationwide achieve this distinction. The Carlsbad girls are nine of 32 Girl Scouts in San Diego who earned the award this year.

Each of the girls’ projects were unique. Proma provided music education and therapy for Indian women and children affected by disabilities, poverty, the sex trade, and mental illness. Alexis facilitated open mic nights for teenagers and adults with special needs at the Hill Street Café. Sophia created an interactive sensory garden and related curriculum geared toward students with special needs. Avalon led surf camps, teaching participants about beach safety and environmental responsibility. Hannah taught third-graders about the current drought, then helped them convert a 1,300-square-foot plot of grass into a drought-resistant succulent garden kept up by the school’s rain watering system. Madison gave students of diverse backgrounds and ages the opportunity to use an exciting new technology: a Bluetooth-controllable robotic ball called a Sphero. Katherine, realizing that her school’s online health class wasn’t meeting student needs, surveyed her classmates and brought in a variety of experts to answer their questions. Elyse started a speech and debate program to help middle school students enhance their self-confidence. Finally, Miya started a Special Olympics program to bring together able-bodied students and those with disabilities.

Girl Scouts San Diego provides activities for nearly 40,000 girl and adult members, with program and service facilities in Balboa Park, Carlsbad, and Escondido. Learn more at www.sdgirlscouts.org.