“When Girl Scout Juniors team up to make a difference in their community, they learn important leadership skills, discover new passions, and watch how seemingly small actions make a big difference. It all adds up to the Girl Scout Bronze Award—the highest honor a Junior can achieve.” -Girl Scouts Lakes and Pines
Each young lady of Ogilvie Troop 686 has worked extremely hard to achieve their Bronze Awards, overcoming the many challenges that arose during 2020. Challenges like the shutdown of Girl Scouts for several months, social distancing protocols, stay-at-home orders, and a Troop Leader who got very sick, forced the girls to find a new and unique way they could help their community. None of the girls gave up hope, even when their ideas were deemed unsafe due to the pandemic, or too complicated to collaborate with businesses that were shut down. After hours of brainstorming they decided the best way to use their talents was to create inspirational and joyful designs on 90 facial masks that could be donated to Welia Health, the healthcare facility in Mora, Minnesota, and naming this project as the “Merry Mask Movement.”
“We are humbled by the donation of such ingenuity and creativeness and impressed how this project truly radiates true community spirit,” comments Randy Ulseth, CEO of Welia Health.
Months of researching, designing, and sewing, the troop ended up with 90 completed masks. With some of the 11- and 12-year-old scouts not as experienced sewers as others, they tasked themselves to create the artwork on already sewn masks hoping to bring some joy to those who get to have one. “Seeing their handiwork around town will be such a testament to their project,” comments troop leader, Marie Olmstead.
The Merry Mask Movement has provided cloth masks that are washable and reusable to people who may not have them helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19. They also provided extra masks for the hospital to have on hand for safety of patients and staff, while providing a moment or two of happiness when people notice the adorable, inspirational, and fun designs the girls created.
What a wonderful project these girls have created to help the community and to bring happiness during a rather gloomy and unprecedented time.