Working to make the world a better place, and protecting our natural world and resources, is part of the Girl Scout DNA and founder Juliette Gordon Low’s legacy. Girl Scouts are an integral part of the mission to serve and preserve our environment, and a few Girl Scouts from Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana (GCNWI) have been recognized for their efforts by receiving the Phillip J. Becker Eco-Advocacy Endowment.
The Philip J. Becker Eco-Advocacy Endowment Fund honors the memory of Philip J. Becker, a life-long educator who was devoted to inspiring young people to embrace careers in the sciences, especially physics, energy, and astronomy. He felt a deep calling to help his children, grandchildren, and all young people understand the urgency of transitioning to innovative, renewable, and sustainable energy sources. His family, with strong Girl Scout ties, honors his memory and his passion for the environment by funding these grants to inspire girls to take action to make the world a better place.
Our Becker Eco-Advocacy Grant recipients are Girl Scouts currently working on a service or highest award project exclusively dedicated to environmental issues. Congratulations to this year’s Becker Eco-Advocacy Award grant recipients, Natalie, Sofia, Ava, Sloane, Rebecca, and Rachel from Troop 70748 and Ariella, Harper, Hailey, Olivia and Abby from Troop 50367! Read about their efforts toward making the world a better, healthier, and safer place for all.
Natalie, Sofia, Ava, Sloane, Rebecca, and Rachel (Cadette Girl Scouts from Troop 70748) will use their grant funds to plant a pollinator garden and distribute seed packets, to help bees, butterflies, and other pollinators pollinate, and to teach others about the importance of pollination. “This will also help put more oxygen in the air,” Ava explained.
“We hope to encourage more people to start planting from our seed packets, bring people to see our pollinator garden, help pollinators live a better life, and last, grow healthier plants for a healthier environment,” Sloane shared. “We are very excited to be given the chance to share more about the importance of pollinators and help our environment to be a more nature friendly area for pollinators and people to enjoy their surroundings.”
“I love animals and I know bees and other pollinators are important, but their numbers are decreasing. I am also worried about climate change, and the more plants we plant, the better,” Ava also shared. “We need to start thinking about the effects of what we do. The more people that reduce, reuse and recycle the better, [because] we only have one earth. I think Girl Scouts will help in many ways like spreading the word and doing projects that help the earth.”
Cleaning up the Beaches
Ariella, Harper, Hailey, Olivia and Abby (Cadettes Troop 50367) have a history of doing park, beach, and local waterway clean-ups, and want to start encouraging others to join their mission. They will use their funds to set clean up stations at local lakes to facilitate voluntary trash pick-up to keep our beaches clean: “Trash at beaches and rivers and parks can accumulate, harming the animal habitats, hurt wildlife and aquatic life, and interferes with our enjoyment of the nature that surrounds us.”
Their troop leader Keri shared, “This troop has been a set of girls that are passionate about animals and wildlife. They have donated to local shelters and Willowbrook Wildlife Center, and just have a pure love of animals and therefore their environment they live in. For example, as part of [earning] their Silver Award they collected thousands of bottle caps to turn into a bench. The bench they donated to their middle school. This exemplifies the Leave No Trace while enjoying nature’s beauty.”
We are so proud of your accomplishments, Girl Scouts! Thank you for sharing your stories and for making the world a better place.