The Girl Scouts of Montana and Wyoming (GSMW) recognized Rebecca (RJ) Schoen as one of the 2022 National Gold Award Scholarship recipients. 

According to the press release, Schoen won the Gold Award in July 2021 when they addressed the stigma behind periods and the lack of sanitary period products due to financial restraints at their Wyoming High School. They also advocated for young people in the community.

RJ worked with PERIOD, a nonprofit organization that aims to eliminate period poverty and the stereotypes surrounding periods. The organization also strives for advocacy, education, and services for youths. Schoen helped establish a PERIOD chapter at their Wyoming school.

RJ Schoen is one of the recipients of the National Gold Award Scholarship. Their efforts to address period poverty and stigma do not go unnoticed (Photo credit: Girl Scouts of Montana and Wyoming).

“I decided to do the Period Project my senior year because I wanted to choose a cause that empowered women in my community in a multifaceted way while still being true to my gender identity,” Schoen said. Through creating this chapter, there were workshops addressing period poverty in classrooms, hosted period product drives, and created educational social media content. 

Girl Scouts of the United States of America (GSUSA) recognizes all 3,500 members for the 2022 Girl Scouts Award class. Each recipient found the root of prominent issues in their community and made solutions to tackle them to earn the highest achievement in Girl Scouts: the Gold Award. This year, the Gold Award class invested more than 300,000 hours addressing real-world problems, including gender inequality in the STEM field, racial justice, environmental conservation and sustainability, and mental health wellness.

The GSUSA councils are given a chance to nominate outstanding Gold Award Girl Scouts to receive a 2,000-dollar scholarship for each nominee. GSMW’s Member Support Manager, Bridget Moore, said, “RJ was chosen by GSMW and GSUSA Gold Award scholarship because their project demonstrated extraordinary leadership, measurable and sustainable impact, and addressed an issue of national and global significance.” Moore goes on to see that RJ’s Period Projet helped address a pressing issue that created awareness of the problem for the community and beyond. 

Gold Award Girl Scholars become compassionate leaders, problem solvers, public speakers, and managers. They cultivate skills showing they are the leader the world needs. “I’d like to tell younger Girl Scouts to take advantage of the higher awards system,” Schoen said. “It gave me a new level of confidence, passion, and skills that I am able to rely upon.” Schoen adds that if anyone is interested in making a change in their community or the world, now is the time to do it.

Click here for a complete list of all the amazing Gold Award projects for 2022. To become a volunteer or for girls wishing to become a girl scout in their chapter, visit this link.