Girl Scout Troop 40102 has been quite busy for the past 15 months! For their Silver Award Service Project, the troop from Joseph Sears School in Kenilworth, Illinois, decided to stay close to their community and looked right in their own backyards to The Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Child & Family Center. The Rice Center, located in Evanston, Illinois, is a therapeutic treatment center providing a holistic approach to therapy for kids ages 6 to 14 who’ve experienced trauma. At the Rice Center, children learn to trust and heal – and return to a safe and loving family.

After taking a tour of the center in December 2018, the Girl Scout Troop saw a need to update the items within the four therapeutic sensory spaces within each living unit. The sensory spaces at the Rice Center  teach self-regulation, stress management, coping, and resilience, in order to help deescalate crisis situations.

Over the course of a year, Troop 40102 raised over $5,300 to support their project to fill the sensory spaces with new equipment for the children at Rice! Through a bake sale, Girl Scout Cookie sales and hosting their very own mini dance-marathon in April 2019, the girls were able to secure the funds to make their service project come to life.

On February 9, 2020, the girls returned to the Rice Center to put their year-long, hard work all together. During the day, they assembled furniture items, such as kneeling rockers which promote active sitting and provide calming movements. Another fun item were the air canoes. This couch-like piece gives a child a comfortable place to sit and regulate their thoughts. Other items the girls selected were weighted vests and blankets, as well as bouncing, textured balls. The weighted blankets and vests are used to alleviate stress and restlessness.

The children and staff at the Rice Center are so grateful for the efforts of the Girl Scouts. With their dedication to the Rice Center, the troop members will receive their Silver Ward Service Project badge. Congratulations, Troop 40102!

Thank you so much for supporting our children and staff at the Rice Center through your hard work and generosity.