Sarasota County resident and Sarasota High School graduate Devon Chiodo has earned Girl Scouting’s highest honor – the Gold Award – with her project titled, Paws Matter.
As a volunteer at Cat Depot, Chiodo learned the organization is strongly against declawing. This sparked her interest to investigate the pros and cons of cat declawing and create a documentary with interviews from local veterinarians and cat owners. Chiodo wants to educate the public on why cat declawing is often dangerous to the cat’s health, mobility, and overall happiness. Since cats cannot speak up for themselves, Chiodo hopes her voice will be loud enough to make a difference.
Chiodo noted, “My Gold Award project helped me gain more confidence with public speaking and communicating to others directly.”
The Girl Scout Gold Award, open to high school Girl Scouts, recognizes girls who demonstrate extraordinary leadership through take-action projects with sustainable impact in their communities. The Gold Award is so prestigious that some universities and colleges offer scholarships unique to Gold Award Girl Scouts, and girls who enlist in the U.S. Armed Forces may receive advanced rank in recognition of their achievements.