What is a Girl Scout Gold Award?

The Gold Award is the highest award that can be earned in Girl Scouts, equivalent to Eagle Scout in Boy Scouts. The Gold Award can be earned by Girls at the Senior (Freshman-Sophomore in high school) and Ambassador (Junior-Senior in high school) levels, and MUST be completed by October 1st the year the girl graduates from high school. Before you can even research your Gold Award project, you have to complete two "journeys" at the Senior/Ambassador levels. A journey is described by Girl Scout Council as: "A key part of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience is the leadership journey, a coordinated series of activities grouped around a theme. On every Leadership Journey, everything girls do—whether it's performing science experiments, creating art projects, cooking simple meals, or learning to protect the planet's water supply—is aimed at giving them the benefits of the Girl Scout 'Keys to Leadership': Discover, Connect, Take Action." It is completed by the girl doing a service project which relates to the theme of the journey. Or, you can complete one journey at the Senior/Ambassador levels and complete your Silver Award, which is the second highest award in Girl Scouts. Before, during and after that requirement and before you can submit your paperwork for approval, you have to attend a "Gold Award Workshop", which is a class where council goes over everything you need to know for your Gold Award. You can also attend a "Gold Award Roundtable" where you go have a brainstorming session with other girls for project ideas. After you have completed the journeys/Silver award and the Gold Award workshop, you can then begin your project. To be a "Gold Award" project, the project must follow these steps:

1. Choose an issue: Use your values and skills to identify a community issue you care about.
  • Live the Girl Scout Promise and Law.
  • Demonstrate civic responsibility.

2. Investigate: Research everything you can about the issue.
  • Use a variety of sources: interview people, read books and articles, find professional organizations online. Remember to evaluate each source’s reliability and accuracy.
  • Demonstrate courage as you investigate your issue, knowing that what you learn may challenge your own and others’ beliefs. 
  • Identify national and/or global links to your community issue.

3. Get help: Invite others to support and take action with you.
  • Seek out and recognize the value of the skills and strengths of others.
  • Respect different points of view and ways of working. 
  • Build a team and recruit a project advisor who will bring special skills to your Take Action project.
4. Create a plan: Create a project plan that achieves sustainable and measurable impact.
  • Lead the planning of your Take Action project.
  • Work collaboratively to develop a plan for your project that creates lasting change.
5. Present your plan and get feedback: Sum up your project plan for your Girl Scout council.
  • Submit a Project Proposal to your council that is concise, comprehensive, and clear.
  • Describe your plan including the Girl Scout Leadership Outcomes you want to achieve and the impact you plan to make on yourself and the community. 
  • Articulate your issue clearly and explain why it matters to you.
  • Accept constructive suggestions that will help refine your project.
6. Take action: Take the lead to carry out your plan. 
  • Take action to address the root cause of an issue, so that your solution has measurable and sustainable impact.
  • Actively seek partnerships to achieve greater community participation and impact for your Take Action project.
  • Challenge yourself to try different ways to solve problems. 
  • Use resources wisely. 
  • Speak out and act on behalf of yourself and others.
7. Educate and inspire: Share what you have experienced with others.
  • Reflect on what you have learned when you present your Girl Scout Gold Award Final Report to your council.
  • Summarize the effectiveness of your project and the impact it has had on you and your community.
  • Share the project beyond your local community and inspire others to take action in their own communities.

Of course, your project can be turned down. You have to submit paperwork, a "Proposal" to your Girl Scout Council to approve, (which can be turned down) then you have to go and have an interview, where you explain what your project is and what you are planning to do, (which can be turned down) then at the end you have to submit more paperwork to your Girl Scout Council, a "Final Report". (which can be turned down) So you have to make sure it follows all those important steps!

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