This year, for the third time in a row, the Girl Scouts of Rhode Island are honoring the best of the best from here in the Ocean State. The ‘Young Women of Distinction Award’ is presented to the three Gold Award projects that have stood out among the others in the areas of creativity, sustainability and impact.
The three young ladies that have been given such honors are Melissa Mirza, who was the grand winner, and runners-up Angela Peoletta and Haley Wohlever.
Melissa did her project on depression and suicide prevention, which has become an ongoing issue for students in high school.
“For my project I put together a performance entitled ‘Trapped’, and it was to raise awareness about depression and suicide prevention. It followed the journey of two high school students and their battles with depression and their road to recovery,” said Melissa.
Melissa also noted that this project has had a very positive outcome and her school is focusing on continuing the work that she has started.
Another project that was created by Angela was geared at educating younger students.
“I created a workshop to teach kids ages 4 -14 about five different disabilities and impairments. I focused on blindness, deafness, communication disorders, and also physical and mental disabilities,” said Angela.
She was really satisfied with the turnout of the event, especially seeing everyone have a good time while being educated on this topic, “All the kids really had fun because I did a different activity at each station, in addition to learning about the disability or impairment that was presented.”
The other project was done by Haley, and she created a series of walking trails at a conservation land in her town.
“When I was first introduced to the project I knew immediately that I wanted to be involved in it and have that lasting impact on my community,” said Haley.
Each of these girls were rewarded a scholarship along with their award. They are all still in high school so they will be using those rewards toward their college education.
“It’s been an amazing experience, the town’s response was really enthusiastic,” said Haley. “It’s been great.”