Gold Award Girl Scout Abbigail McGee from Geneseo, Illinois, was awarded a national scholarship from Girl Scouts of the USA thanks to sponsorship from Arconic Foundation and Kappa Delta Foundation. Abbigail received this scholarship for her Girl Scout Gold Award project, in which she created a butterfly garden at the new Liberty Village Memory Care courtyard in Geneseo, Illinois, to honor those affected by Alzheimer's disease.
Abbigail planned, raised money, and collaborated with local businesses to honor those affected by Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia with her butterfly garden. She presented the garden in a ceremony in August of 2021, which included a butterfly release followed by a reception for guests. The garden has many plants that attract butterflies, symbolizing hope for those affected by Alzheimer's. The garden also consists of a shallow water fountain and butterfly houses to promote butterfly growth and population development. The garden is decorated with metal art and inscribed stones that provide information on the symbolic importance of butterflies at Liberty Village. Abbigail created the garden in memory of her grandfather, Samuel Splear, who passed away from Alzheimer's in early 2021.
The Girl Scouts of the USA Gold Award Scholarship recognizes one outstanding Gold Award Girl Scout per council whose project exemplifies the core components of the Gold Award. The Gold Award is the highest achievement a Girl Scout can earn, available to girls in high school who create sustainable change on a community or world issue. Gold Award Girl Scouts address the root cause of a problem, plan and implement innovative solutions to drive change, and lead a team of people to success. As they take action to transform their world, Gold Award Girl Scouts gain tangible skills and prove they are the leaders our community and the world need.