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Both Parise sisters are completing their time in Girl Scouts with a Gold Award

Hannah and Maya Parise have been involved in Girl Scouts since early elementary school. They've gone on numerous camping trips together, led groups of younger girls and now they're completing their Gold Award projects.

The Gold Award is the highest honor in Girl Scouts. In order to earn a Gold Award, the Girl Scout must create a project that benefits a group and spend at least 80 hours on it.

Hannah's project, called From Me to You, provides activities for children in hospitals. She got the idea for her project when her mom was telling her about being in the hospital as a kid and how boring and lonely it was.

"If I were a kid I would want to draw and stuff," Hannah said.

She remembered that as a kid she used to make books with her friends.

She searched online for blank children's books to purchase. Then, she started an art club at Lakeridge High School to recruit volunteers to help her turn blank pages into fun activities for kids in local hospitals. The books are designed to be personalized and interactive.

When school went remote last March, the club had to continue producing books from their homes.

"Some are short stories, some are puzzle books [or] interactive journals so they can fill in the blanks," she said. COURTESY PHOTO: HANNAH PARISE - Hannah Parise's art club worked to personalize 50 interactive books for children in hospitals.

Hannah also hosted a donation drive at Lakeridge for new art supplies like crayons, colored pencils and stickers to be donated along with the books.

Hannah and her volunteers have created 50 books and will be delivering them to Shriners Hospital for Children and Randall Children's Hospital.

Her sister Maya chose a project that would benefit her peers.

Green for Teens is a resource Maya created after taking a personal finance class at Lakeridge.

Taking the class didn't exactly sound fun to Maya.

"It's something I didn't want to do because it scares me," she said. But she was determined to learn the information she knew would be vital to her future.

She said she learned so much from that class that she wanted to give students who didn't take the class access to the information.COURTESY PHOTO: MAYA PARISE - Maya Parise created booklets to prepare students for their financial future

"The things I didn't learn in class, I learned in books that I read," she said.

She read a handful of books on money management for the project.

She also talked with a financial planner, a bank teller and police officers to learn the information she didn't learn in her class. COURTESY PHOTO: MAYA PARISE - Maya read books on money managment to prepare for her project.

Green for Teens is available at greenforteens.com and as a booklet in selected school libraries.

The resource covers topics of budgeting, taxes, investing, credit cards, identity theft and scams.

On the website, visitors can take a pre-quiz that assesses the financial knowledge of the individual and a post-quiz to see how your knowledge grew after reading the advice on the website.

Maya currently has over 120 views on her website, well on her way to reaching her goal of 200.


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