Local Girl Scout earns Gold Award

‘If you have a passion for something you’d like to change, you should pursue it, because you’re capable of a lot more than you think’

By: Zachary Manning | Farmington Press | Published July 1, 2021

 Farmington Hills resident and Detroit Country Day senior Victoria He earned the Gold Award honor with the Girl Scouts. She was one of 13 to receive the honor nationally.

Farmington Hills resident and Detroit Country Day senior Victoria He earned the Gold Award honor with the Girl Scouts. She was one of 13 to receive the honor nationally.

Photo provided by Girl Scouts of Southeast Michigan

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FARMINGTON HILLS — Farmington Hills resident and Detroit Country Day senior Victoria He has been a Girl Scout since the first grade.

She noted that it helped shape her identity and aided her in key areas, such as communication, character development and leadership skills.

With her growth throughout her time with the Girl Scouts, He took the challenge of the Gold Award project, which allows Scouts to work on projects that must address or solve a community issue or problem, engage community supporters and partners, and have sustainable outcomes.

About 6% of Girl Scouts nationally take on the challenge. With her project, He earned the Gold Award. There was a total of 13 girls who earned this award for the 2020-21 membership year.

“We are so excited to honor these phenomenal young women,” Girl Scouts Southeast Michigan CEO Monica Woodson said in a press release. “They’ve earned the ultimate Girl Scout award and have shown their community how to be a true leader and a catalyst for growth. We will continue to support them as they transition into adulthood and lead by example.”

For her Gold Award project, He took action to educate her community about the environment. After reading that a main cause of climate change is a lack of education, she knew that such an issue could be fixed. Working with a group of peers, she organized several environment-related organizations to come together for an education fair to teach the community about an array of topics, such as green energy, recycling, watersheds and more.

The fair ended with visitors learning something new and willing to make a lifestyle change.

He also worked with Michigan Youth Empowerment to distribute masks to people in her surrounding community, organizing a team and splitting up mask deliveries based on location. She and her team delivered 460 masks to residents at a senior citizens home.

In total, He said, eight organizations were there to present information, and around 100 people showed up to learn about sustainability efforts.

With mask delivery, she said it was important to her to serve her community, especially those who were deemed high risk, as Farmington and Farmington Hills were hit pretty hard earlier in the pandemic.

“I was really excited, because I put a ton of work into it,” He said. “It took multiple years. One of the requirements for getting the project is spending more than 100 hours. I definitely spent closer to 120 or 150. It was just a big passion project of mine that I put a lot of my effort toward, and I was really excited that I got the Gold Award in the end.”

Through her work with the Girl Scouts and as a Gold Award recipient, He earned a $500 scholarship to the school of her choice. She will be attending the University of Michigan to study business.

With her project complete, He had some advice for those looking to follow in her footsteps within the Girl Scouts or just looking to make an impact in the community.

“If you have a passion for something you’d like to change, you should pursue it, because you’re capable of a lot more than you think,” He said. “Even just the smallest thing can make a big difference.”

For more information about the Girl Scouts, visit gssem.org.

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