After being a girl scout for 11 years, Chloe Blumanthal is working toward the highest achievement a girl scout can work toward: a Gold Award.

A Gold Award is a service project that requires a scout to plan an 80 hour sustainable project.

“Once I graduate next year, I will become a lifetime girl scout, so you can pay and then you have a membership forever,” Blumanthal said.

Blumanthal has worked for almost a year to plan her event, which aims to spread mental health awareness.

“Being in high school, I see a lot of kids struggle with it,” she said. “I think that a lot of people don’t really understand everything that’s put on us. And I know how to handle it a lot better than some kids do because I come from a really stable home and I have both of my parents there and they are always there supporting me I don’t think a lot of kids have that, so I just wanted to make it easier for kids to access these things.”

Mental health awareness is something personal to Blumanthal.

“Two years ago my uncle committed suicide and that was kind of not expected,” she said. “After that I kind of realized everyone suffered with it. I have a lot of anxiety dealing with homework and school and everything, I can imagine all the other things that kids have put on them, so I just kind of wanted to address it because I think that it’s an issue.”

The conference will host many activities, including photos by Steph’s Studio, a sand table, wax hand dipping, essential oils, journaling, gardening and Horspice, among others. There will also be informational booths, including HOPE Squad and Out of Darkness Walk.

Blumanthal has also reached out to mental health professionals, including an art therapist, play therapist and counselors.

Another focus Blumanthal has for the event is to connect students interested in pursuing the mental healthcare profession with people in the field, including a forensic psychologist, and Chadron State College professionals.

Blumanthal also has worked to make a brochure to show mental healthcare professional resources available in the Panhandle.

For her conference, Blumanthal received funds from Behavioral Health Education Center of Nebraska totaling almost $3,000.

The conference is scheduled for 1 to 4 p.m. on April 18 at Newberry’s. The event is open to the public. Girl scouts can pre-register at www.girlscoutsnebraska.org and non-Girl Scouts can pre-register by calling (308) 760-6402. Registration fees include a T-shirt, patch, snack and activities.

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