My Girl Scout Story
My name is Sydney Mangus and I’m a 17-year-old junior at Laguna Beach High School. When I was in eighth grade, I went on a medical mission trip to Haiti. When I went, I got the opportunity to work in clinics alongside various medical providers and we would see many women coming in complaining of neck pain. I figured this was due to the fact that many women carry heavy baskets on their head in order to leave their hands free so they can carry their children. This inspired my Girl Scout Gold Award project.
I decided I wanted to see if I could reduce the amount of clients coming in with complaints of neck pain. In order to do this I made baby slings that allow the mother to carry their child with while leaving their hands free. Following a simple pattern, I used 2.5 yards of cotton fabric to sew the slings. I hosted various community days where members could come and learn to sew the simple sling pattern or craft the prayer cards that went on the sling when they were rolled up and sent.
In January of earlier this year, the mission team took roughly 80 slings to give out to the women of Haiti. Unfortunately due to school conflicts, I was unable to join the mission team this year, but my project advisor who lives in Haiti was able to put me in connection with various groups who also helped distribute and teach the women how to wear the slings. In order for this project to be Gold Award worthy, it has to be sustainable. To meet the criteria for making this project sustainable, I sent instruction sheets with the slings in January that explained how to make the slings, that way the women in Haiti can learn how to make them themselves and use them in their community.
As well, the project is sustainable in California because I, along with other members of the mission Haiti team continue to make the slings so that they can be sent each year with the mission team. If anyone is interested in knowing more about the project or getting involved please feel free to contact me at sydney.mangus@iCloud.com