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Gold Award Girl Scout uses her green thumb for good


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St. Louis, MO – July 10, 2018 – Lillian Orskog, an incoming junior at Kirksville High School in Kirksville, MO, recently earned the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest achievement in Girl Scouting. By earning the award, Orskog exemplifies a leader who has transformed an idea or vision for change into an actionable plan with a measurable and sustainable impact. Orskog was recognized with other Gold Award Girl Scouts during a ceremony at Lindenwood University in St. Charles this summer.

A recent national report indicates healthy eating patterns are associated with positive health outcomes. Evidence shows incorporating a healthier dietary lifestyle is associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, certain types of cancers and obesity. As Orskog started planning her Girl Scout Gold Award project, giving her community members easy access to fresh vegetables was a priority.  

To earn the award, Orskog assembled 25 salad garden boxes and in each one, planted vegetables like lettuce, kale, carrots and peppers. After the seedlings took root, Orskog donated the miniature gardens along with 25 herb boxes to community members interested in harvesting their own vegetables. Orskog made sure to gift one salad garden box to the Adair County SB40 Developmental Disability Board, so the clients of the organization also can pick vegetables growing right outside the door.  

“I love to cook and use the plants that we grow at home,” Orskog said. “Some people can’t do that, and I wanted to make sure that they can.”

Orskog created a website that includes recipes using the vegetables she planted in the salad boxes in addition to gardening trip and tricks. Orskog also connected with individuals from Community Action Partnership of Northeast Missouri who will incorporate her project into a program that provides fresh produce to area residents.

The Girl Scout Gold Award represents the culmination of more than 80 hours of work on a project. Approximately one million Girl Scouts in ninth through 12th grade have earned the Girl Scout Gold Award or its equivalent since 1916.

A young woman who has earned the Gold Award is a community leader. Gold Award Girl Scouts report a more positive sense of self, are more engaged civically and in community service, have more confidence in their leadership abilities, and experience greater life satisfaction and success than non-Gold Award peers. Some of the benefits of becoming a Gold Award Girl Scout are:

  • Immediately rising one rank when enlisting in the US Armed Forces
  • Earning scholarships from colleges and universities
  • Recognition from many government and non-profit organizations

Earning the Gold Award is just one of the amazing things girls can do as part of Girl Scouts. To join Girl Scouts or learn more about volunteering, please visit girlscoutsem.org/join.