VALLEY CENTER, Kan. — Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland congratulates Della O. for becoming a Gold Award Girl Scout, a designation she earned by designing and planting a pollinator garden at the Starwoods Outdoor Center Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland camp and creating educational materials to accompany the garden.
The Gold Award is the mark of the truly remarkable — earned by a high school Girl Scout who works to address an issue she’s passionate about in a way that produces meaningful and lasting change. Whether it’s on a local, national, or global level, Gold Award Girl Scouts provide innovative solutions to significant challenges.
“Gold Award Girl Scouts don’t just change the world for the better, they change it for good — and Della embodies everything this achievement stands for," said Rolinda Sample, chief executive officer of Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland. “Della addressed an issue that’s important to her — protecting and advocating for pollinators — for her Gold Award, and we congratulate her on this momentous accomplishment.”
With the growing decline in various pollinators such as bees, butterflies, moths, bats, and birds, Della focused her Gold Award project on creating a sustainable garden that would attract various pollinators and allow them a safe place to live, breed, and continue the pollination cycle.
Della created the garden at the Starwoods Outdoor Center Girl Scout camp located in Clearwater, KS, so the garden could continue to be maintained by campers, camp staff, and volunteers who go to Starwoods throughout the year. She created instructions on the necessary maintenance of the garden as well as information on potential plants that could be added and information on various pollinators. In the garden, Della planted native perennials for easy maintenance, used upcycled materials to create water globes, and created pebble trays as water stations for the pollinators to drink from. The garden is also certified with the National Wildlife Foundation.
“Originally I wanted to do a vegetable garden, but I soon realized that vegetables are annuals and not perennials, so that would have been a whole process to figure out how to replant the vegetables each year,” Della said. “I decided on the pollinator garden plan with the perennials because I knew it would be more sustainable and also make a larger impact on different pollinators and creating a habitat for them.”