Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

Local News

June 20, 2014

Girl Scouts care for pets and themselves

Seated on the railing of their Girl Scout Cabin porch, members of Daisy Troop 4570 talked excitedly as they spread the word about animal safety, a service project that has taught them more about pets and themselves.

The troop spent the duration of the 2013-14 school year working toward their Red Robin badge as part of the Three Cheers for Animals journey project.

“I learned that you need to take care of your pets like, every single day,” said 7-year-old Shahara Byrum.

After the troop visited the Effingham County Humane Society, an animal refuge and stood in the center of an eagle nest, their mission became to spread the word about animal safety throughout their community.

To do this, they have posted on Facebook, made donations to animal shelters, and practiced animal safety skills in their daily lives with pets of their own.

What bonds the self-proclaimed future nurses, police officers, restaurant owners and supermarket cashiers of the world, is a love and appreciation for animals.

The badge had three core requirements, the first being to learn the logistics of how to care for their pets. The second lesson taught the girls how to care for themselves, and the third required they teach others about what they learned.

“Those same things they do to take care of pets and animals also relates to taking care of themselves,” said troop’s leader Stacey Macklin.

This meant drawing self-portraits of how to take care of an animal, as well as a drawing illustrating the scouts doing something good for themselves.

The Daisies learned both humans and pets require the same care: healthy eating, proper hygiene, etc.

Beyond basic needs, Macklin taught the girls about compassion and self worth.

“Girl Scouts, they do a lot of focus on empowering girls and getting them to explore all the different things they can become and do,” Macklin said.

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