Girl Scout wins award by helping the elderly

SHARPSVILLE – Girl Scouting’s highest awards—the Bronze, Silver, and Gold Awards—are a girl’s chance to make a lasting difference in the world. Girl Scouts Western Pennsylvania is honored to present Kylie Jackson with the Girl Scout Silver Award, the highest recognition for achievement in Girl Scouting for girls in grades 6 through 8.

This award recognizes girls who demonstrate—individually or as a group—extraordinary leadership through sustainable and measurable Take Action projects that address important community needs.

Through a leadership project, Kylie Jackson wanted to address issues associated with Alzheimer’s in the elderly and ways to help calm or comfort Alzheimer’s patients.

Kylie began her research on Alzheimer’s, issues that arise with Alzheimer’s patients and hands on activities that could help manage their symptoms. Through her research and with the assistance of her advisor, Holly King, a retired registered nurse, she chose to make busy blankets.

These busy blankets are made of a soft quilt-like material with touch based activities attached to help decrease symptoms such as anxiety and agitation. Signs of these symptoms are pulling, rubbing at clothes, twisting fingers or wringing hands. They also assist in calming nerves and providing comfort. The goal of the busy blankets is to provide engaging activities to help keep them calm, happy and feeling good. Kylie used zippers, different types of material, buttons, pockets and other touch based items for her blankets. Kylie learned how to sew the blankets and attach all the touch based items that she chose on to the blankets. After finishing the blankets, Kylie delivered them to a local nursing home.

Kylie used her strength, talent, and skills and put her plan into action to earn the Silver Award while taking a leadership role.

Kylie is a daughter of Heidi Knight and Scott Jackson from the Sharpsville Area School District and surrounding community. As a Girl Scout member for eight years, she was supported in her Silver Award efforts by Holly King (advisor), Angela Reda (Journey Leader) and Jo Ann Messett (Troop Leader).

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