An idea from a young student in Pennsylvania has been adapted for
Westwood Bales and is working well, thanks to a group of Friendswood Girl Scouts.
The idea is a Buddy Bench and the project helped earn Bronze Awards for
the girls involved.
Recently Friendswood Girl Scout Junior Troop 26283 set out to achieve the
Bronze Award, the highest honor a Junior scout can achieve. The troop, led by
Camille Escobedo and Page Kerr is made up of 14 fifth grade girls from local
elementary schools, including Bales, Windsong, and Wedgewood Elementary in
Clear Creek ISD and located in Friendswood (Harris County).
In order to achieve a Bronze Award, the girls had to identify a need in the
community and create a plan of action to serve that need, help others, and make a
The need identified by Troop 26283 was a buddy bench on the school
playground. With the leadership of the troop’s dads, this led them to build, paint
and personalize three rainbow colored park benches which were presented to Lee
Whitlock, Assistant Principal of Westwood‐Bales on May 21, 2014.
The troop was inspired by Christian Bucks, a second grader from York, PA
who wanted to give kids without a playmate on the playground a place to sit and
feel welcome. The idea of the bench is that if a student sees a child on the buddy
bench she/he should go talk to her/him or invite her/him to join in play. By placing
the bench at the playground, children are encouraged to start new friendships with
those sitting on the bench.
“The buddy bench concept compliments the school’s character building
lessons and pillars of caring and citizenship,” WW‐B counselor and author of
Character book What is Under Your Cape?, Barbara Gruener said.
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