As her Girl Scout Gold Award project, Tatiana Bierut (BY-root) wanted to compensate for a lack of babysitter training in her area and she wanted to teach more teens and tweens how to properly babysit young children.
Bierut is a graduate of John Burroughs School who completed her Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest national award that a Girl Scout Senior or Ambassador, girls in grades 9-12, can earn. Bierut was a Girl Scout Juliette, meaning that she was an individual Girl Scout, not part of a traditional troop.
“I hoped to educate children and give them the tools necessary to become a good babysitter, a good leader and a good role model for younger children,” she said. “This project taught me I am more of a natural leader than I expected and it caused me to want to take a more prominent role in my community.”
In conjunction with the University City Public Library, Bierut created a course with a plan and materials. The students gained knowledge about how to be a safe and effective babysitter while the library received a new course to offer visitors.
Earning the Girl Scout Gold Award requires a suggested 80 hours of planning and implementing a challenging, large-scale project that is innovative, engages others and has a lasting impact on its targeted community with an emphasis on sustainability.
“This project is sustainable because I created a manual and course materials for the library so it can continue offering the course without me,” she said. “The library plans to find a volunteer in future years to direct the class using my course materials. I’m going to train that volunteer this summer.”
Bierut soon discovered challenges many child care providers experience as she conducted her lessons. “It was difficult keeping the kids, ages 10-16, involved for long periods of time,” she said.
She said she covered babysitting basics as well as taught the kids new skills from her experiences.
“I learned many new professional skills, including how to create a timeline, how to make a budget and how to manage my time so that every task was completed effectively and efficiently. I learned communication skills that I will use throughout my life.”
Earning the Girl Scout Gold Award puts girls among an exceptional group of women who have used their knowledge and leadership skills to make a difference in the world. Some of the Gold Awardee benefits are:
- A Girl Scout who has earned her Gold Award and enlists in the US armed forces, immediately rises one level in rank
- Colleges and universities recognize the achievements and leadership abilities of Girl Scout Gold Award recipients by offering scholarship programs
- Achievements of the Girl Scout Gold Award recipients are acknowledged by many government and non-profit organizations
Less than one percent of all Girl Scouts earn the Girl Scout Gold Award. With talent, passion, commitment and determination, they can make changes in their communities and impact people around the world. This year, 40 girls in eastern Missouri earned Gold Awards. They were recognized at a reception at Maritz in Fenton in June.