Kayla Gardner: Stars and Stripes Award-Winner

More stories from Autumn Young

Graduation 2016
May 15, 2015

Kayla Gardner joined the American Heritage Girls when she was in second grade. American Heritage Girls is a Christian organization that is very similar to Girl Scouts.  They earn badges and awards and do community service.  She joined this organization because it was fairly new that she was curious about. Gardner has earned eighty-two badges and several awards. To earn a badge or an award, one must meet the requirements needed to obtain the badge or award. “My favorite badge is my Archery badge because it was something I had never done before, and it was interesting to me,”said Gardner.


Kayla Gardner has also participated in various activities. Her favorite activity was the indoor rock climbing trip that she went on with her troop. They also do countless things to help around the community. Gardner’s favorite part about AHG is getting to help people out. Her troop, Troop TN0413, has also gone on camping and hiking trips. She has spent 57 nights camping and has journeyed 45 miles of hiking.

Gardner has been awarded the Stars and Stripes Award. This award is the last award one receives in this organization, and they must complete a project for it. She completed a project for River Oaks Place Assisted Living Facility. Gardner said, “I chose this place because when I was younger, I went to nursing homes and saw how happy it made the elderly, so early on, I knew I wanted to do something for them.” She constructed a plan for wheelchair-accessible flower boxes that had to be sturdy enough for people to put weight on them. She spent over 266 hours building these along with 23 other volunteers. They transported them to the nursing home along with flowers and soil and got to plant flowers with these people. Gardner said, “This was the most rewarding experience with American Heritage Girls.”