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“Helping Hands” by FHS Senior Stephanie Skura


Currently a Senior at Framingham High School, Stephanie Skura completed her Gold Project, earning the Gold Award. She has been selected for this highlight because her efforts go beyond the classroom. We appreciate learning about the lives of our students. If you have any stories or accolades to share, please send them to Rochelle Santos:

Helping Hands by Stephanie Skura

Stephanie Skura’s project was called “Helping Hands”. She wanted to ease the anxiety many children feel when going to a doctor's office for a physical exam. She created a 'Teddy Bear Clinic' program that walked preschool students through a series of stations with a stuffed animal. The stuffed animal was the subject of these mock doctor's office visits, and was also used to demonstrate safety and hygiene best practices, like wearing a helmet while riding a bike and the importance of brushing your teeth. Stephanie facilitated the program at three local preschools, and through pre- and post-questioning, she discovered that the students had reduced levels of fear and apprehension about visiting a doctor. She distributed her lesson plans to the schools, in addition to six other preschools in the area.

When we asked Stephanie what the Gold Award means to her and why she chose to pursue it, she said:

“I have made an impact in my community that stretches further than myself. It has given me the opportunity to complete a project that at first appeared daunting, but with a little guidance I became successful in carrying out. After finishing the award, it has become a project I am proud of and opened my eyes to the infinite impacts I can make on my community.”

Please see below for some photos of the “Helping Hands” project in action, as well as, some photos of Stephanie at the ceremony:

Stephanie Skura Gold Award 1.jpg

© Randy H. Goodman

Stephanie Skura Gold Award 2

© Randy H. Goodman

Stephanie Skura - Helping Hands Project

Stephanie Skura - Helping Hands Project 2

Stephanie Skura - Helping Hands Project 3

What is the Gold Award and who can receive it?

The Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls—and the most difficult to earn—and it’s only available to Girl Scouts.  

How does one receive a Gold Award?

Gold Award Girl Scouts are challenged to change the world—or at least their corner of it. In order to receive a Gold Award, a Girl Scout needs to complete a 7-step project. The steps are outlined below.

  1. Identify an issue: Use values and skills to choose a community issue that she cares about.
  2. Investigate it thoroughly: Use her sleuthing skills to learn everything she can about the issue she’s identified.
  3. Get help and build a team: Form a team to support her efforts and help her take action.
  4. Create a plan: Identify the root cause of an issue, and then create a plan to tackle it.
  5. Present the plan and gather feedback: She needs to submit an official Project Proposal Form to her Girl Scout council for approval.
  6. Take action: Lead her team and carry out the plan.
  7. Educate and inspire: Tell her story and share the results.

What does a Gold Award recipient receive?

The young women who receive the award are inspiring leaders whose Gold Award projects are impacting the worlds of STEM, education, agriculture, medicine, and more on a local, national, or global level. Besides the pride that come with the great achievement Gold Award Girl Scouts are also eligible for various college scholarships.