Scout honored for project benefitting mentally disabled

New flagpole installed at facility


On Thursday, June 13, BSA Eagle Scout, Amanda Barile of Bohemia, was honored at an Eagle Scout Court of Honor ceremony for Troop 572 at Sycamore Avenue Elementary School.
Amanda, who also serves her troop as junior assistant scoutmaster, bugler, scribe, and assistant senior patrol leader, said that confidence was her biggest improvement as a person being a member of the BSA.
“Scouting has helped me understand things I never knew I could achieve. As small as instructing lashings to a group, or finally finishing the application process on my completed Eagle Scout Project, I have achieved things in scouting that I didn’t visualize myself doing until I actually finished them. Attaining my Eagle Scout rank means being part of a legacy of excellence while paving the way for future Eagle Scouts to follow in our footsteps with leadership, integrity, and service,” said Amanda.
Proud mom and scoutmaster for Troop 572, Geselle Barile, said the BSA Scouts were “embracing new opportunities,” especially since allowing girls to join in 2019.
“Being in BSA Scouts means embracing new opportunities. Scouting has so much to offer, such as demonstrating leadership, enjoying adventure, and participating in community service,” said Geselle.
In her scoutmaster role, Geselle said she hoped to inspire younger generations of both girls and boys “by exemplifying courage, resilience, and compassion.”
“BSA Scouts offers a platform to mentor, advocate for inclusivity, and support the development of well-rounded individuals. Personally, it also represents a commitment for growth, which has fostered a spirit of camaraderie and mutual respect with adult leadership in our troop,” said Geselle.
Starting on Feb. 8 of next year, the BSA will have a new name, “Scouting America.”
“The rebranding reflects the organization’s commitment to welcome everyone to experience the benefits of Scouting programs,” said Geselle.
The Eagle Scout honor is the highest level of achievement for members.
In the BSA handbook, an Eagle Scout project is defined as, “a service project helpful to any religious institution, any school, or your community.”
A written plan must be submitted using the BSA Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project Workbook and be pre-approved by the benefiting organization (who cannot be the BSA), the Scout Leader, the unit committee, and a district representative, before work on the project can begin.
After the project is complete, the Scout updates the workbook where they discuss the methods in which they gave leadership, ways the plan may have had to change, and the benefits of the project to the community.
Other Eagle Scout Projects include: constructing park benches, running a blood drive, constructing a playground, building bat houses for a local park, refurbishing a room at a church or school, resetting stones at a cemetery, planting grass for erosion control, organizing a dinner, interviewing American veterans for the Library of Congress, distributing emergency medical information kits, and collecting necessities for the homeless.
Amanda’s Eagle Scout Project was carried out on Sept. 10, 2022, and was for an Oakdale-based nonprofit named Family Residences and Essential Enterprises Inc. (FREE), which was founded in 1977 and headquartered in Old Bethpage.
The organization assists more than 4,000 individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities, mental illness and traumatic brain injury “to reach their full potential and thrive in their communities.”
FREE provides: housing, recovery services, transition to work, employment, day, community and family services, respite, crisis services, education and after-school support, primary and specialty health care and advocacy.
The project involved installing a new flagpole with an American flag, a POW flag, an eagle topper, and solar lights on the pole, as well as creating a business sign with a flowerbed full of perennials. The organization gained an inviting entrance to their facility and an aesthetic interest in the evening.
“It was an honor and privilege to work with an amazing group of volunteers, both from within and outside of our scouting community, to make this project a success,” said Amanda.


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