Inspiring Entrepreneur and author of Moving Through Open Doors, Dawn Fitch, delivered the keynote speech at Achievement Ceremony on June 3
On the afternoon of Sunday, June 3 Girl Scouts Heart of New Jersey (GSHNJ) presented 137 young women with Girl Scouting's highest honor for its girl members — the Girl Scout Gold Award at Girl Scouts Heart of New Jersey’s Fourth Annual Gold Award Dinner at the Bridgewater Manor, Bridgewater, N.J.
There are 137 Girl Scout Gold Award honorees from across the Council's seven-county region which includes Hudson, Essex, Union, Somerset, Hunterdon, southern Warren and parts of Middlesex. The cities represented are
Aberdeen proving ground 1, Annandale 6, Asbury 1, Basking Ridge 20, Bedminster 1, Belle Mead 4, Belvidere 1, Berkeley Heights 3, Bloomsbury 2, Branchburg 4, Bridgewater 5, Califon 2, Clark 2, Cranford 9, Elizabeth 1, Flemington 10, Franklin Township 1, Glen Ridge 1, Hillsborough 9, Hillside 1, Laguna Niguel 1, Lambertville 1, Lebanon 1, Livingston 8, Manalapan 1, Maplewood 1, Martinsville 1, Middlesex 1, Milford 2, Montclair 1, Neshanic Station 1, Port Murray 1, Princeton 1, Rahway 1, Ringoes 1, Scotch Plains 5, Skillman 2, Somerset 2, South Plainfield 1, Staten Island 1, Stockton 1, Union 11, Watchung 1, Westfield 5, and Whitehouse Station 1 girl earning this high honor.
The Girl Scout Gold Award is achieved by girls who complete rigorous leadership projects by committing a minimum of 65 hours to their planning, implementation and completion. The project portion of the award challenges the girls to venture out into the community and address the root cause of an issue. They use community resources to create a lasting impact that will be endured long after the project is completed. The work involved is demanding, time consuming and takes a tremendous amount of ambition to complete. Each of the girls earning the honor has made a serious impact; changing their communities and the world. Approximately six percent of Girl Scout Seniors and Ambassadors nationwide earn the Gold Award.
The scope of Gold Award projects vary widely. Representative Gold Award projects this year include: “To Build a Handicap Park” – finding volunteers and organizations to donate and install specialized park equipment for the handicapped and the installation of a fence to protect it for a township in which there was none, “The Hero Next Door” – the authorship and publication of a book about veterans, their wartime experiences and acts of courage from a local community which will be used as a reference book in the school district at the high school level.
The keynote speech was delivered by Dawn Fitch, president of Pooka Pure and Simple, a handmade bath and body company and also founder of Beauty That Cares, a company with an inspirational business model empowering girls and women to create their own ‘businesses’ by making products consisting of natural ingredients while learning civic responsibility by donating one of their products they create during the workshop to a women’s shelter with the purpose of sharing the gift of natural beauty and relaxation. Dawn’s company, Pooka, has moved from a small venture operating from her kitchen stove to a large warehouse in East Orange, NJ. The business has matured substantially with products carried in 35 Whole Food supermarkets and Ms. Fitch has to her credit become a high-demand guest speaker and a role model, featured on The Today Show, CBS evening News, and on the cover of Essence Magazine and Black Enterprise Magazine.
“The Girl Scout Gold Award is just the beginning of what happens in a community when you work together to create something. Always remember it really is simple,” Ms. Fitch said in her address “learn it, make it, share it.”
Girl Scouting's mission is to build girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place. Girl Scouts Heart of New Jersey is one of New Jersey’s largest girl-serving organizations, with over 25,000 girls and 10,000 volunteers in Hudson, Essex, Union, Somerset, Hunterdon, southern Warren and parts of Middlesex counties. Approximately 70 percent of women in leadership and executive roles in the U.S. and 70 percent of U.S. Congresswomen are Girl Scout alumnae.
For information on Girl Scouts or to volunteer, call 908-518-4400 or visit us at www.gshnj.org.
Please direct inquiries about the Gold Award to Sue DeCarlo, Girl Award Recognition Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org