By RACHAEL LONG
For the past year, a group of four Girl Scouts and their mothers have worked on a special project for Nolensville Police Department. On Saturday, they will finally reveal their hard work.
Girl Scouts Troop 1785 needed to complete a community project to earn their Silver Award, which asks those seeking the merit to identify a community problem and find sustainable solutions to bring positive change to the community.
Troop leader and mom to one of the Scouts, Jennifer Bounds, approached the Nolensville Police Department (NPD) more than a year ago to find out if there was a problem the troop could address. Police Chief Roddy Parker said Bounds was welcome to take a look, but the NPD didn’t have anything for the troop.
As it turns out, they did.
The NPD offices were full of old furniture, leftover from the Historic Nolensville School, and old office equipment. Police Chief Roddy Parker said the space suffered from years of neglect, and with no budget for improvements, the situation was grim.
Troop 1785 gave the department a much needed face lift.
Bounds said the troop began by just painting one room in the department’s offices. Before they knew it, the troop had painted the entire department’s office space.
The troop also gathered donations, like new flooring, desks, chairs, tables, a refrigerator and a television. Parker said the television allows officers to monitor local news and weather, and keep the department caught up on important area events.
“The Makeover has allowed the NPD staff to have a useful workspace that is clean, pleasant and professional,” Parker said. “We are now proud to have visitors in our office space.”
The girls, who are all in eighth grade, each took on a leadership role for the project, like gathering donations, organizing the art competition, leadership for the painting project and advertising and marketing.
Another big part of earning the Silver Award, Bounds said, is connecting the community. The troop created an art wall at the NPD offices and organized an annual art contest at a local middle school to create an ever-changing display.
Bounds has a special tie to this project, as both of her parents are career police officers in Knoxville. For her, the troop’s community project was also a way to honor her parents by supporting her local law enforcement officers.
The Girl Scouts will host the presentation at the Nolensville Police Department Saturday, Jan. 9 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., where they will show before and after images of the department and give tours of the space with the police chief.
The presentation — which is the final step for the troop to earn the Silver Award — will even feature a bagpiper, Bounds’ father, who is a member of Knoxville Pipe and Drum.
“The Girl Scouts of America are very excited about this particular project because I don’t think anybody else has done this,” Bounds said. “We’re pretty excited.”