GJ scout troop showcased by PBS for work with disabled kids

SPECIAL TO THE SENTINEL—Girl Scout Troop 1804 of Grand Junction is highlighted in a minute-long television segment that is part of the Rocky Mountain PBS series “Women and Girls Lead.” The troop was selected for the segment after winning a scouting award for creating a Special Olympics program for children ages 5 to 7.

You might soon spot Grand Junction Girl Scout Troop 1804 between shows on Rocky Mountain PBS.

The troop is the latest group to be highlighted in Rocky Mountain PBS’ series of minute-long segments spotlighting creative and active females as part of the station’s “Women and Girls Lead” initiative. The spot featuring Troop 1804 is available online at rmpbs.org/womenlead, which has a link to the YouTube clip under troop member Vicki Bachtell’s name and photo.

Rocky Mountain PBS selected the troop for the honor after it won a silver award,  the highest award a middle school-age troop can earn, last October. The girls earned the award for introducing a track and athletics program for 5- to 7 -year-olds with physical or cognitive disabilities in May 2011. The program takes place during the annual District 51 Special Olympics, which before had only been open to children 8 years of age or older. This is the third year the troop helped implement the program.

Troop members, who are now in high school and will move up from middle school-age girl scout cadets to seniors, are Karissa Abele, Bachtell, Milan Haupt, Katie Kiefer, Mira Mercier, Chloe Pickford, and Natalie Weber. Kayla and Mindy Mazza are no longer part of the troop but were part of the group that earned the silver award.

Troop 1804 Leader Karen Kiefer said the girls were excited to see their spot on television for the first time earlier this week. Kiefer said having young teens organize and help run a specialized event for children is a big responsibility that deserved recognition.

“It’s hard to be in charge at that age and they did it,” she said.


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