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Girl Scouts Get Some 'Awesome' Help

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A new Girl Scout troop will soon be forming at a Tallahassee elementary school. It's the latest community project funded by the Awesome Tallahassee group. Awesome Tallahassee has been around since the beginning of this year. Each month, it picks a local non-profit service organization to receive a thousand dollar grant to advance its cause.

On Wednesday evening of this week, four Awesome Tallahassee Board Members, Chester Spellman, Steve Schale, Kevin Cate and Erin VanSickle, were interviewing a new crop of prospects for this month's grant.

“So this is Christy Baldwin with the Four Points Family Center,” said Spellman, introducing the first contender to the group.”

Applicants, like Baldwin, described their organization and its work.

“We are already set up,” she explained. “We have four or five teachers who are coming in.”

Besides the Four Points Family Center, there was the Leon County Humane Society and its Pawsitive Reader program, in which kids practice their reading skills out loud to homeless cats.

“You can pretty much guarantee that any day you walk in, you’ll find at least in one room a kid sprawled out on the ground with cats all around him just freely reading with a parent nearby,” said Society Interim Executive Director Lisa Glunt.

There was also the local Builders Care effort that provides home repairs for disabled and displaced families. And finally, there was a group bearing gifts.

“This is Amy Jones with the Girl Scouts,” said Spellman as Jones and her colleague Megan Washington passed out boxes of Girl Scout cookies to the delight of the Awesome Tallahassee board members.

The hope was to fund the creation of a brand new scout troop at Springwood Elementary School near Lake Jackson.

“It used to be one of the 21st Century Schools,” Washington pointed out, “and it was because of the low literacy rates and math rates as well as the low socioeconomic (area), so we’re reaching girls who wouldn’t be able to afford being part of Girl Scouts.”

The money would pay all expenses for about forty-five girls.

“So the $1,000 would cover that?” asked Schale. “Yes, as well as getting their own book, so they would have the full curriculum and everything they need,” replied Jones.

After that, cookie sales would keep the troop in business. That seemed to clinch the deal as far as the Awesome Tallahassee board was concerned. Thursday morning, the board announced the girl scouts were this month's winner of the $1,000 grant.