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Crystal Simmons
(713) 292-0321

Girl Scout builds Discovery Butterfly Garden to earn Gold Award

FRIENDSWOOD (Jan. 27, 2011) – Girl Scout Ambassador Cristine K. designed, planned and organized a Discovery Butterfly Garden for elementary students to earn the Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council Gold Award, the highest award a Girl Scout can achieve. Less than five percent of girls who join Girl Scouts earn this recognition.

“I learned several important skills such as organization, time management and project management,” says Cristine, a senior at Friendswood High School. “This project has also taught me perseverance and how much a little hard work can pay off.”

Earning the Gold Award is a significant honor that requires recipients to demonstrate outstanding leadership skills, career planning, community involvement and personal development. It takes more than 100 service hours and two to three years of intensive work to complete the award requirements, which include planning and completing a project that is a service to the community.

“When doing my community profile, I saw several needs in my town,” explains Cristine. “When I found out the garden project covered several of these areas, it ended up being the perfect project.”

Cristine built the garden in the underutilized Bales’ outdoor atrium to teach elementary students about the environment. The project took a year to complete with the help of up to 15 volunteers. As a result of her efforts, teachers are able to use the garden to integrate science and environmental education outside the normal curriculum.

“I was very pleased to see how well Cristine was able to adapt to and overcome unseen contingencies,” says Olivia Kristof, Cristine’s mother. “She was able to create work-arounds and call on resources to work through any problems that arose during her project. She did this calmly and professionally.”

As an active member of Girl Scouts for 12 years, Cristine earned her Silver and Bronze Awards and participates in cookie sales and camping trips. At Friendswood High School, she is a leader in Interact and Technology Student Association. Following graduation, she plans to attend college to study engineering.

Girl Scouts of the USA is the world's preeminent organization for girls, with a membership of more than 3.7 million girls and adults. Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. Chartered by GSUSA to provide Girl Scouting locally, Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council is one of the largest Girl Scout councils in the country serving more than 72,000 girl members and 18,000 adults in 26 southeast Texas counties. For more information call 1-800-392-4340 or visit

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