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Orange, Woodbridge Girl Scouts Honored with Gold Award

Orange, Woodbridge Girl Scouts Honored with Gold Award

Helen Ruckes of Orange and Julia Tomei of Woodbridge have received the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest honor a girl can earn in Girl Scouting.

Celebrating its 100th Anniversary this year, the Girl Scout Gold Award requires Girl Scouts grades nine through 12 to spend at least 80 hours researching issues, assessing community needs and resources, building a team, and making a sustainable impact in the community. A Gold Award recipient’s accomplishments reflect leadership and citizenship skills that set her apart as a community leader. Nationally, only 6 percent of older Girl Scouts earn the Gold Award.

Orange;-RuckesHelen created a “Rainbow Cooking Class” which introduced elementary-aged girls to healthier food options. Each week, Helen and her class prepared food based on the colors of the rainbow. Helen taught girls recipes that they can prepare on their own or with their families. Helen created cookbooks for each girl to take home and share with their family and friends encouraging them to keep trying new and healthy foods.

Woodbridge;-TomeiJulia noticed that a lot of pet owners did not know the proper procedures or have the right medical supplies for when their pet is injured, so for her Gold Award Project she created first-aid kits for pets. Julia created an informational sheet on how to create first-aid kits for your pet, made a pamphlet filled with tips on pet safety, and created a YouTube video. Julia distributed the first-aid kits to her local veterinarian hospital to be shared with pet owners throughout her community. Julia will continue to make more first-aid kits for the veterinary hospital for them to distribute to their patients’ families. Julia will continue to distribute her information sheet and pamphlet and leave it at the veterinary hospital with the kits. Her YouTube video will also remain on the veterinary hospital’s website.

“Since 1916, approximately one million Girl Scouts have made a sustainable impact in their communities,” said Mary Barneby, CEO of Girl Scouts of Connecticut. “We are so thrilled to honor a record number of girls this year and we are excited to see how many more incredible young women will continue to change the world in the next 100 years!”

For more information about the Gold Award or how to become a Gold Award volunteer or mentor, visit


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