Kennedy Williams, a student from Glastonbury, Connecticut, has an abundance of accomplishments for a woman of her young age. The high schooler from Glastonbury High School has been a Girl Scout since the age of four, initially drawn to the caring and supportive environment of the organization.
In the past few years, Kennedy has earned her Silver Award, the highest award a Girl Scout Cadette can earn. The project required fifty hours of community service, and Kennedy’s centered on literacy. She created six “little free libraries”, planned a free book drive, and eventually stationed these libraries all over Connecticut. Some are in senior citizen homes where other Girl Scouts can read to seniors. Currently, Kennedy’s own library is in a juvenile courthouse.
Now, Kennedy is working on earning her Gold Award. The focus of this project is mental health awareness. After a rough transition to high school, Kennedy realized that teachers and counselors must be more aware of students’ struggles. And thus, her project began.
Of her proudest accomplishments, mental health advocacy remains center. For instance, Kennedy recently joined other Girl Scouts across Connecticut in attending the organization’s Lunch with your Legislator event at the state Capitol. There, she discussed mental health awareness, change in public schools regarding the issue, and the creation of a mental health awareness fair. Additionally, Kennedy also met with state legislators to discuss her own experiences regarding her transition to high school, even giving a speech regarding mental health.
As for her future, the young leader plans on going into the STEM field. Being a minority, she hopes to use the leadership skills she learned in Girl Scouts to push forward in her career, unapologetically progressing and establishing herself professionally.
Kennedy’s parting message: always support each other, community and a so-called “sisterhood,” much like the one she experiences in Girl Scouts is powerful for young women. Support alone is important, but having a support system is even better. Also, make sure you spend time for yourself, this is key in order to grow and progress.
Joely is a high school intern for Connecticut NOW. Her interests include intersectional feminism, women’s literature, YouTube, and documentaries such as, “She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry.” Joely also runs CT NOW’s Twitter and Instagram.