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Betsy Denson, Communications Director
(713) 292-0236
1 (800) 392-4340, ext. 1236

Girl Scout Emily Colarusso Earns National Recognition for Service

Girl Scout Emily Colarusso recently earned a singular achievement - she was named a Girl Scout Gold Award Young Woman of Distinction by Girl Scouts of the USA. Chosen for her exceptional community service project, which first earned her the Gold Award locally - the highest award in Girl Scouting - Emily represents the top Gold Award recipients in the country and will be recognized nationally. The honor, earned this year by only 25-50 Girl Scouts nationwide, will be celebrated in October at the Girl Scout National Convention in Atlanta, Georgia. Emily will spend four days in Atlanta networking with others and participating in leadership workshops in addition to being honored for her outstanding accomplishment.

Emily’s project, “Recycle for Life,” showcased the importance of recycling the human body so that others might live. She undertook a campaign to educate communities about the need to donate blood and the proper protocol for doing so. In order to achieve her goal, she set up blood drives and partnered with Life Gift, Locks of Love, the National Bone Marrow Center, the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center, and Vial of Life to share information with the public about their respective missions. Community members were encouraged not only to give blood, but also to sign organ donation cards, donate hair, and register with the National Bone Marrow Center. An additional component of the service project was the collection of eyeglasses at area eye clinics for the Lions Eye Bank. The time requirement for her Gold Award was 50 hours, but Emily logged an amazing 152 hours, not counting drive time or time spent on the phone.

The direct impact on the community was overwhelming. Emily educated close to 1,000 people about the importance of organ donation. In all, 613 pints of blood were collected, 746 donor cards were completed, 1,106 vials of life were distributed, four bone marrow donations were made, 88 inches of hair were gathered, and 63 pairs of eye glasses were collected. Statistics from the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center estimate that 58,895 lives could be saved through these efforts.

“We are so proud of Emily and everything that she has accomplished,” says Mary Vitek, CEO of Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council. “All the girls in our Council who undertake a Gold Award project each year are to be commended. Their hard work and deep concern for others truly make the world a better place.”

Chartered by GSUSA to provide Girl Scouting locally, Houston-based Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council serves more than 58,000 girl members and 14,000 adults in 21 southeast Texas counties. For more information, call 713-292-0300 or visit us online at Today, as when founded in 1912, Girl Scouts cultivates values, social conscience, and self-esteem in young girls. In Girl Scouting - and its special girl-only environment - girls discover the fun, friendship and power of girls together.

GSSJC Pluralism Statement
Embracing and promoting pluralism is an integral part of every activity and plan of Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council, not disconnected or separate projects. Only individuals willing to accept and be educated about the basic tenet that Girl Scouting is for all girls may serve in volunteer leadership or staff positions.

GSSJC | Communications Department
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