The Girl Scouts from Troop 33101 of the Caloosa unit in Girl Scouts of West Central Florida Council are working toward their Silver Award. The Silver Award is the highest award a Cadette can earn and only 10 percent achieve this.
Ella Madison, a Cadette from Troop 33101, along with a group of four fellow seventh grade Girl Scouts, are working on a community service project with the goal of bettering the community. According to Madison, the task is to turn an old conference room at the 4th Assault Amphibian Battalion into a heritage room where Marines can relax in their spare time.
Madison said, “This is a way for us to give back to those who risk so much to protect and serve our country. It is meant to be a place where Marines can unwind and display their rich history.”
Madison added, “The United State Marines, 4th Assault Amphibian Battalion (4th AABn) has been a part of our community for over 80 years.”
“Because of this rich history that the Marines hold in our community and the incredibly demanding nature of their work, our group chose to create a space for the men and women of 4th Assault Amphibian Battalion to relax, reflect, learn and strengthen their camaraderie,” Madison explained.
The room the Girl Scouts are transforming is located within a set of buildings off to the right side of Gandy Blvd., before you head over the bridge to St. Petersburg.
Several of the girls in the troop have direct connections to military service. Lourdes Reyes is the troop leader, and her husband is a veteran. Reyes said, “Girl Scouts are not only about arts and crafts. They learn basic skills that aid both their physical and mental health. Now they want to do more for the community.”
Madison explained the project by stating, “We took an unused conference room and turned it into an amazing room full of artifacts, such as sand from Iwo Jima, uniform items and battlefield maps. We ripped out carpet, painted, built shelves and hung items. In the process, our group learned so much from the Marine volunteers. Our pride and respect for all the Marines there and what they have done has grown tenfold. We only hope this room will mean as much to them as it does to us.”