Eagle Scouts are always willing to lend a helping hand for the benefit of others. These hard-working Scouts have a long history of completing service projects that make a difference in their communities – whether it’s for their official Eagle Scout project or because they have an everyday passion for public service.
In Kansas, community members are taking notice of the hundreds of Eagle Scout projects being completed each year and they’re thrilled at the results. In fact, Kansas had 647 Scouts become Eagles in 2015 equating to that many service projects across the state.
But while the benefits of these projects reach a myriad of communities, these projects also make a profound impact on the boys themselves.
“It is all about the leadership from start to stop,” said Dustin Farris, National Eagle Scout Association director to The Wichita Eagle. “This is one time they can’t count on the Scout leader or mom and dad. This is one time when everybody else relies on them.”
Eagle Scout Caden J., agreed and says he even helped a fellow Scout complete his project because teamwork with other aspiring-Eagles can be part of the process, too.
“We have to do everything. We have to come up with plans, and get them approved, (by Scout leaders, the hosting location and, sometimes, government agencies),” shared Caden. “It’s up to us to find a way to get all of the materials, then we need get the materials to the project and organize the manpower to get the project completed.”
Caden and his brother, Caleb, spearheaded separate Eagle Scout projects to improve a public piece of natural lands near their high school. Between the two, the boys lengthened and cleaned the trail and constructed and installed houses for birds, bats, and butterflies. They also installed 17 stations that use a cellphone app to teach hikers about the animals and vegetation on the land.
“We’ll be naming this the Eagle Trail, to honor all of the work the Eagle Scouts have done out here,” said Denise Scribner, a science teacher at their high school. “I’m not sure how we’d have gotten the funding and labor otherwise.”
Caleb says he hopes the trail serves as a reminder that others can make a difference in the community, too.
“Someday I’ll be able to bring my kids here and show them what I did,” he said. “That will be neat for all of us.”