GLEN CARBON – Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois is pleased to announce that Madaline Ruez of Centralia was selected as a recipient of the inaugural Girl Scouts of the USA Gold Award Scholarship.

The Girl Scouts of the USA Gold Award Scholarship recognizes one outstanding Gold Award Girl Scout per council whose project exemplifies the core components of the Gold Award. For her Gold Award project, Madaline decided to give back to something that was near and dear to her heart – the Girl Scout Little House at Foundation Park in Centralia. The Girl Scout Little House is a cabin built by Girl Scout volunteers in 1954 so that girls could host activities in all seasons. In spite of its prominent place in the history of Girl Scouting in Centralia, usage slowly declined over the decades. “The cabin stopped being used when I was in second grade, so current Girl Scouts did not have as many opportunities or even know about the cabin,” said Madaline. The Little House needed substantial repairs, so Madaline focused her efforts on the cabin so that it could be enjoyed by other Girl Scouts for years to come.

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As a scholarship recipient, Madaline will receive special recognition at the 2021 Girl Scouts Change the World celebration, a virtual event held by Girl Scouts of the USA on October 9. Girls in 4th grade and up and their supporting adults who are interested in attending this free event can do so; visit for more information.

Madaline is currently attending Eastern Illinois University where she is majoring in Middle School Education with a focus in English Language Arts and Mathematics. “Girl Scouts helped me decide I wanted to become a teacher. I am now studying to be a middle school teacher because of Girl Scouts,” stated Madaline.

Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois serves over 7,800 girls and engages 3,357 adult volunteers in 40 counties in Southern Illinois. Call 800-345-6858 or email Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois is a not-for-profit organization supported by United Ways, businesses and individual donors throughout the region.

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