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Crystal Simmons
(713) 292-0321

Girl Scout helps shelter cats to earn Gold Award

FRIENDSWOOD (March 8, 2011) – Girl Scout Ambassador Kelley K. built an outside playground for the cats at Bay Area Pet Adoption 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 to be more confident in leading and guiding people in accomplishing tasks,” says Kelley, a senior at Lutheran South Academy.

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.

“I chose this project to help the cats at Bay Area Pet Adoptions,” explains Kelley. “Most of the girls I know select Gold Award projects that help the human population. I decided that I wanted to do something different and help the animal population.”

After learning that cats kept isolated are unlikely to be adopted, Kelley designed a play area where cats could interact in a safe environment. The play area required research, supplies and hard work to develop a structure that would accommodate many cats at once and be roomy enough for the cats to exercise. The entire project took nine months with seven volunteers.

“We feel that Kelley learned she is capable of accomplishing tasks that might seem beyond her reach,” says Bob and Edith Kachnik, Kelley’s parents. “Kelley is more confident and determined that she will be successful in whatever lies ahead.”

As a member of Girl Scouts since she was a Brownie, Kelley has earned her Bronze and Silver Awards. At Lutheran South Academy, she participates in the drill team, the dance team and school musicals. Following graduation, she plans to attend college and pursue a career working with animals.

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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