Girl Scouts go for gold


Senior Marie-Louise Kloster scrolls through a time log on her phone. She has spent over 50 hours on a service project and estimates that it will take well over a total of 80 hours. This is not just any service project: she is going for the Gold Award, the highest honor a Girl Scout can receive.

Kloster and her troop have stayed together since elementary school. The mothers of Kloster and Michelle Owens, senior, have been the troop leaders since senior Shreya Rao can remember. “There was a point in middle school when a lot of people quit, and we only had three members. We weren’t technically a troop, but we got more people to join later,” Rao said.

“We merged with another troop of girls the grade above,” Kloster said. These girls are now freshmen in college and still come to meetings when they can. Current Central students in the troop are Kloster, Rao, Owens, and Robin Owens.

The troop has meetings that Rao describes as, “low stress and a lot of fun.” They also try to do a few events each year. Last year they volunteered for Polar Express, decorating the train, passing out coloring books, and reading The Polar Express. It is a tradition to get together and bake cookies around the holidays, which Rao and Kloster agree is their favorite activity.

To even attempt to receive the Gold Award, a Girl Scout needs to either complete a journey project and receive the Silver Award or  finish two journey projects. Kloster and Rao already have the Silver Award and completed one journey project.

The Gold Award is supposed to be worked on individually. “We have to create a unique, sustainable project for an organization that helps our community,” Rao said.

They pick subjects they are passionate about. Rao is trying to increase information sources in the community on autism, while Kloster is hoping to work with the Adventist Hinsdale Hospital.

“It’s a really prestigious award for job applications and college. I wanted to do something good and make a difference,” Kloster said. Although they no longer wear sashes with patches like in elementary school, these girls continue to work towards the peak of Girl Scouts. And yes, they still sell Girl Scout cookies.