Rep. Cuellar Presents Three Laredo Youth with Congressional Award
Today, Congressman Henry Cuellar (TX-28) presented three Laredoans, Isabella Davila, Sugeily Jarmon, and Lauren Melendez, from the Girl Scouts of America with the Congressional Award for achieving goals in voluntary public service, physical fitness, personal development and expedition, and exploration.
The Congressional Award offers young people the opportunity to set personally challenging goals and achieve them. Along the way, they serve their communities and learn about qualities like responsibility, citizenship, and the ability to plan and organize.
“Congressional Award recipients represent the best of America. Isabella, Sugeily and Lauren have committed to bettering themselves and giving back to their community," Congressman Cuellar said. I congratulate these young women in for achieving their goals in voluntary public service, personal development, physical fitness, and expedition and exploration and thank them for being role models to our youth. I also thank the parents, teachers and mentors who work every day to provide guidance and opportunity to our nation’s youth.”
Isabella Davila – Silver Medalist
For Volunteer Public Service, Isabella served the Girl Scouts of America by dedicating her time helping with events. She babysat, was a camp counselor at Camp Bayview, and helped with “Badge University”, an event for Girl Scouts to earn badges and learn new life skills. For Personal Development, Isabella improved her drawing and painting skills so she could create bigger and more elaborate art. She attended many art classes, was an assistant to a local instructor during classes and paint parties, organized art exhibits for students, and helped at summer camps. Isabella’s goal for Physical Fitness was to be able to perform a jump serve in tennis as well as improve her overall strength and health. She took tennis lessons, played in tournaments, ran and walked for conditioning, and attended yoga classes. She is now better at tennis and can successfully jump serve. For her Expedition, Isabella helped plan a five day, four-night camping trip. She traveled to Camp Huisache, a local Boy Scout campsite. In addition to practicing cooking, tying knots, hiking, learning archery and fishing, and birdwatching, Isabella also engaged in service projects to improve the camping grounds. Through the Congressional Award, Isabella gained experience, knowledge, the satisfaction of helping others, and life-long friendships.
Sugeily Jarmon – Silver Medalist
For Volunteer Public Service, Sugeily dedicated her time to helping the Girl Scouts of America. She served in many capacities including babysitting, helping with homework, and becoming a camp counselor at Camp Bayview. Sugeily’s goal for Personal Development was to make her own scarf by becoming better at crocheting. She spent two to three hours every week with a mentor who was very skilled in the art of crocheting. They practiced techniques and she was eventually able to successfully make her scarf. For Physical Fitness, Sugeily wanted to make the Varsity Track team in her main event, the high jump. She worked hard training in both the gym and on the track. She was able to make the Varsity team and improved her record jump from 4’0 to 4’8. For her Expedition, Sugeily helped plan a five day, four-night camping trip. She traveling to Camp Huisache, a local Boy Scout campsite. In addition to practicing cooking, tying knots, hiking, learning archery and fishing, and birdwatching, Sugeily also engaged in service projects to improve the camping ground. Through the Congressional Award, Sugeily learned more about herself and personal traits.
Lauren Melendez – Silver Medalist
For Volunteer Public Service, Lauren worked with the Girl Scouts of America. She volunteered at many events such as “Badge University”, which helps girls earn badges and learn new skills, an “Outdoor Skills Spectacular”, which provides girls the skills they need to survive in the wilderness. She also served as a camp counselor at Camp Bayview. For Personal Development, Lauren served as a debate coach for Mock Trial at the National Hispanic Institute. She spent the summer coaching incoming sophomores in high school in an effort to prepare them for a four-day competition known as the Great Debate. Lauren’s goal for Physical Fitness was to be able to jog three miles in approximately a half hour. She has a condition known as spondylolisthesis which prevents her from doing any activity that puts a strain on her back. Lauren attended a physical fitness class, physical therapy sessions, and walked around a track near her home. She has greatly improved her physical health and can now jog rather than being restricted to walking. For her Expedition, Lauren helped plan a five day, four-night camping trip. She traveled to Camp Huisache, a local Boy Scout campsite. In addition to practicing cooking, tying knots, hiking, learning archery and fishing, and birdwatching, Lauren also engaged in service projects to improve the camping grounds. Through the Congressional Award, Lauren has learned the importance of time management and consistency when acquiring a new skill.
Congress established the Congressional Award in 1979 to recognize initiative, achievement, and service in young people. It is a private-public partnership, which receives all funding from the private sector, and was originally signed into law. Visit www.congressionalaward.org for more information on the award and its requirements.