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The 411: Youth

Keith receives Gold Award

Keith receives  Gold Award
The new garden, planned and installed by Sarah Keith, member of Girl Scout Troop 559, will provide residents an entertaining and stimulating physical therapy.

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July 25, 2012
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The Frank M. Tejeda Texas State Veterans Home in Floresville has a new healthy outdoor activity, courtesy of a local Girl Scout.

On June 16, Sarah Keith presented her Girl Scout Gold Award project, The Golden Gardens, to a large audience of local businesses, organizations, youth groups, and approximately 30 residents of the veteran home.

Sarah, a local 16-year-old and member of Girl Scout Troop 559, was responsible for planning, organizing, and supervising the construction, installation, and planting of three wheelchair-accessible raised-bed gardens, located outside the home’s activities room. This project concentrated on teaching youth volunteers safety, basic construction, soil and garden preparation, and proper plant selection, while providing residents an entertaining and stimulating physical therapy.

The Gold Award is the highest a Girl Scout can achieve; it is equivalent to the Eagle Scout Award in Boy Scouts. Both teach the Scout courage, pride in community, and leadership.

When asked what inspired her project, Sarah said, “Gardening is a healthy, mentally uplifting exercise for our heroes, and provides another opportunity for wisdom and knowledge to be passed on to another generation. The local youth have pledged to regularly help with any heavy work for many years through their local clubs. This is the exciting part, because it addresses sustainability twice!”

Sarah has concentrated over the past year on leadership and community service. She said that recent research turned up her new favorite quote concerning the leadership quality of generosity: “My candle loses nothing when it lights another” (attributed to James Keller). The amazing generosity she received in accumulating the resources for this project has produced in her a new level of respect for the citizens of this county. She offered special thanks during the presentation to VIP sponsors Mike Haberstroh, Dittmar Lumber, Pfeil’s Home and Garden Materials, the Floresville Masonic Lodge, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Wilson County 4-H, and the Wilson County Teen Reading Club.

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