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Connie Chavez Villarreal

Girl Scout Renovates VFW Women’s Auxiliary to Earn Gold Award

Girl Scout Senior Sarah Helton spent four months renovating the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 8905 Women’s Auxiliary to earn the Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council Gold Award, the highest award a Girl Scout can achieve. Less than 5 percent of girls who join Girl Scouts earn this recognition.

“I learned that leadership and responsibility come in every aspect of life,” says Helton, a student at Cy-Fair High School.

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 met the ladies of the VFW when I was at a Scout meeting. I was disappointed and immediately noticed the room did not reflect the women’s achievements,” explains Helton as to why she chose to re-do the facility. As part of her project, Helton recruited 25 volunteers to help clean, paint and reorganize the auxiliary, which was built in the 1940s.

“I watched as she took on an extremely time consuming project that made a major difference to a lot of wonderful women,” says Connie Helton, Sarah’s mother. “Every small detail was noted by the VFW and appreciated.

As a Girl Scout, Helton has been involved in backpacking, numerous community service projects and girl leadership committees like the Girl Planning Board, a Girl Scout program that allows older girls to plan and manage special all-girl events for the Council. After high school, Helton plans on studying communications at the University of Texas or Sam Houston State University.

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 65,000 girl members and 17,000 adults in 26 southeast Texas counties. For more information call 1-800-392-4340 or visit

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.

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