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By Chris Cox

Though school is not in session and some youth might be unsure how to spend their time, several young ladies from the area are busily working at sewing machines.

The Juniors of Troop 5041 based in Curtis, Michigan have been creating face masks as part of their Bronze Award activities. They have been making masks for the last two weeks to help protect the community from the coronavirus.  Their efforts are already paying off.

On April 1st, the Luce County Ambulance Service asked for face masks to help Emergency Medical staff remain safe during runs. The Girl Scouts delivered and within a day, 30 masks were ready to go for ambulance personnel. They have also delivered masks to Newberry Assisted Living, the Luce County Sheriff Department, and will have some soon for other local health workers. Girl Scouts Victoria Butler, Reagan Bird, Evelyn Cox, and Ava Holcomb have tackled the project.

Originally, the girls aimed to make 20 masks each. Using materials that were donated or purchased with funds from Girl Scout cookie sales, they just kept sewing and sewing. Cox made 53 herself before retiring from her face mask career.

All together, the girls made 188 masks so far, all of which have been dispersed into the community. Butler, Bird, and Holcomb are still stitching.

“The other three girls are still working their little hind ends off,” said troop leader Brianne Butler, who is also Victoria’s mother. “Almost as fast as we can get them into the community, they’re disappearing.”

In addition to the masks donated to individual departments, distribution boxes have been placed at Taylor Market in Helmer and Mac’s Market in Newberry.

These efforts will earn each scout the Bronze Award – the highest award a Junior Girl Scout can earn. To earn it the young ladies must perform a service project that “addresses a root cause of a community issue and has a sustainable impact.” This project must include a minimum of 20 hours per scout. The young ladies then write a reflection on their experience, what they have learned, and how this action proved beneficial to the community in which they serve.

These young ladies are definitely on their way to Bronze awards and beyond. With foresight and leadership like this, they can take our communities to new heights.