Bellmore-Merrick Girl Scouts receive Gold Award


Four Bellmore-Merrick Girl Scouts received their Gold Awards and were honored in a ceremony at The Brookside School on June 14. The Gold Award is the highest achievement for Girl Scots, and consists of 80 plus hours of service to help combat an issue within their community or the world around them.

Girls must prepare a plan of action, create a team of volunteers and experts and take action to address the problem. The four recipients who were honored include Julia Amon, Taylor Backman, Grace Pantelis and Kayleigh Reardon.


Julia Amon

After completing her silver award, Amon knew that she wanted to make her Gold Award about helping people, and that is what she did. Amon volunteered at local farm in Bellmore, helping to make a pollination garden on the farm. She did everything from picking the flowers that would grow, to planting the seeds, and evaluating the progress over the first six months. The garden that Amon created was able to help create more produce on the farm, which would be donated to help feed the homeless population in her community.


Taylor Backman

Backman, while volunteering at the local church garden, learned about the importance of pollinators and how their numbers are in decline. Backman made it her mission to help spread awareness about the decrease in pollinators and take action into fixing the issue. Backman partnered with the Merrick Avenue Middle School and the Go Green Club to create a pollination garden right in front of the school. Taylor also went around her community, talking to young kids at the school and at Air Dance in Merrick to spread talk about the importance of pollinators in our everyday lives. Backman even inspired the young students in Merrick to help build her garden with her, including creating kindness rocks that are now placed around the garden.


Grace Pantelis

Pantelis partnered with Calhoun High School to give lessons on the importance of a healthy lifestyle to the special needs community there. Through research she was able to find that children with special needs are often overweight and don’t make healthy lifestyle choices. Through carefully planned out lessons involving arts and crafts, and visual learning, Pantelis was able to teach the students the importance of living a safe and healthy lifestyle.


Kayleigh Reardon

For her project, Reardon wanted to focus on an issue that hit close to her, school start times. Through research and talking with her peers Reardon realized that the current start time of schools can effect students health and she wanted to pursue it further. Reardon gave her fellow students a questionnaire asking them to talk about how they felt about the current school schedule and how it effected them throughout the regular school week. She also allowed for students to reflect on their current schedule and adjust it to what they think would be best now.