589 Girl Scouts Receive Medals

MANILA, Philippines --- A total of 589 young women from all over the country who have successfully undertaken various community development projects have been awarded with the Chief Girl Scout Medals by the Girl Scouts of the Philippines (GSP) yesterday at the Aliw Theater in Pasay City.

Celebrating its 36th year, the GSP held its Chief Girl Scout Medal (CGSM) awards through a Chief Girl Scout presentation ceremony to honor the country's outstanding girl scouts.

According to GSP National President Salud Bagalso, the GSP offers programs that are meaningful and responsive to their members' needs and interests. One of these is the CGSM, which is a special program created in 1975 encouraging Senior and Cadet Girl Scouts or young women aged 15 to 17 to initiate and implement a one-year community project in their respective barangays focusing on health, cultural heritage, livelihood and ecology.

"The CGSM continues to provide opportunities for girl scouts nationwide to serve their communities while developing personal values, relational skills, and positive character," Bagalso said. She explained that the awards aim to give special importance to the quality of change that the CGSM and the girl scouts bring to people in the communities. "May you continue to grow and be good stewards of all Earth's resources," she said. "Much is expected from you to inspire, educate, share, breathe life into the word 'change,' and create a world you want to live in," she added.

Prima Ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde, who served as the guest of honor and speaker, lauded the awardees for a job well done and urged them to keep up the good work. In her speech, she also encouraged the awardees to continue doing their best in their specific fields of interest. "Choose a goal that you are very passionate about," she added.

Around 2,700 girl scouts from all over the country - including the awardees, their parents, troop leaders, GSP officials, and community members - witnessed the special event. According to Program Committee Chairman Crsitina Lim Yuson, a total of 25 awardees came from the Western Mindanao Region; 85 from the Eastern Mindanao Region; 56 from the Visayas Region; 112 from the Central Luzon Region; 145 from the Southern Luzon Region; and 166 from the Northern Luzon Region. "The Chief Girl Scout Award is one experience you can be proud of in your lifetime," she told the awardees.

GSP National Executive Director Ma. Dolores Santiago said more than the leadership skills, discipline, perseverance, and sense of responsibility that the girl scout awardees have shown, "their genuine concern to community-building is much admirable." To date, the Chief Girl Scout Award remains the GSP's most prestigious award with a total of 6,571 recipients since its inception.