By Josh Davis, Associate Editor
(Sept. 13, 2018) Girl Scouts from local Troop 736 last Wednesday presented the staff at the Richard A. Henson Cancer Center in Ocean Pines with 100 cancer care kits for patients.
The months-long project was part of the Scouts’ pursuit of the Bronze Award, the highest honor given to Junior Girl Scouts.
As of last Wednesday, the girls had filled 100 backpacks with tooth brushes, toothpaste, ginger candies, teas, puzzle books, fuzzy socks and other items to help make visits to the Cancer Center more tolerable.
They also made 50 lap blankets and stocked a rolling cart with pencils, markers, word searches, coloring books and other items. Also included were “Hats for Hope,” made from LuLaRoe leggings.
“We had a local person in Berlin who went out of business, so she took all of her items and sent them down to North Carolina and they came back as hats,” Bronze Project Troop Advisor Colleen Dillon-Rutzler said. “This woman donated them to the troop, to be able to donate them to [cancer patients].”
The Scouts were assisted by many other community donations, with several local businesses agreeing to act as drop-off sites for items included in the backpacks.
Dillon-Rutzler said work on the project started in May.
“They were really, really into it by June, so June, July, August, their whole summer vacations they spent at least once a week [on the project],” she said.
She said the girls will put together a report, to be sent to the Girl Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay office in Delaware.
“They’ll get reviewed and, if they sign off them, then they will be honored at a dinner in January,” Dillon-Rutzler said.
In a previous interview, Dillon-Rutzler said each of the girls in Troop 736 have been affected in some way by cancer.
“My daughter, MaryAnn Catherine, in fact, not only experienced cancer as a daughter of an acute myeloid leukemia survivor, but also watched and was a special caregiver to my sister, her godmother, that succumbed to metastatic breast cancer after a 14-year battle,” she said. “With this in mind and the goal of the Bronze Award, the girls as a whole looked at making a difference in the community and developed some wonderful ideas to benefit the Richard A. Henson Cancer Institute of Ocean Pines.”
The project was “a lot of work, but it was actually pretty fun,” Johanna Hallman, 11, said Wednesday.
“It means a lot, because you make all the patients happy when they get all this stuff, and it’s just fun to see them smile,” Hallman said.