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9th-graders earn Girl Scouts' Silver Award

Brainerd ninth-graders Melissa Bachman (left), Charlie Johnson, Anya Ziemer and Ali Schroer earned their Silver Award for their project "PTSD -- Not All Wounds Are Visible." Submitted Photo

Brainerd ninth-graders Alexis Schroer, Charlie Johnson, Melissa Bachman and Anya Ziemer earned their Silver Award in Girl Scouts for their "PTSD—Not All Wounds Are Visible" project.

Girl Scout Troop 599 recently completed requirements for Girl Scout's top achievement for cadette level. The girls learned more about PTSD—post-traumatic stress disorder—such as who gets it, what causes it and what can be done to help treat it. The girls helped educate the

community by doing a display at the local Wounded Warriors game this past summer, made tie blankets for veterans and made a YouTube video for others to get more information.

The Silver Award is the highest award girls in sixth through ninth grades may earn. Each girl working to achieve the Silver Award must complete requirements helping her build leadership and living skills, explore career possibilities and make a commitment to improving herself. After these criteria are met, the final requirement is to design and carry out a Silver Award project.

"Most people think it is a vet who have served in the war, but it's not just them," Schroer stated in a news release. "PTSD is a part of a mental illness that people don't want to talk about."

"When I was researching the symptoms, there are four different types," Ziemer stated. "Each type affects people differently."

Johnson stated, "Our project helped remove the stigma people have about PTSD in our community as well as helping people suffering with symptoms of PTSD."

Bachman stated, "I was surprised that abused children have the highest percent of PTSD, then it was for battered and/or raped women—both were more than military veterans."

For 105 years, Girl Scouting has been helping build girls of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place. For more information about how to join, volunteer, or donate to Girl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin Lakes and Pines, visit www.gslakesandpines.org or call Monica Husen 218-270-4859.