When natural disasters strike, the loss of things normally taken for granted — like clean water — become a high priority with a short supply.
While these tragedies cannot be predicted, the Papillion Girl Scout Troop 43450 aims to be prepared by launching a community-wide bottle water drive, collecting bottled water donations at Papillion Fire Department, Station No. 1, 146 N. Adams St., through Feb. 3.
“I’m really proud of the girls,” Co-Troop Leader Natalie Mandolfo said. “They’ve planned this, really, on their own.”
Mandolfo said the troop, which is composed of second- through fourth-graders from both Carriage Hill and Trumble Park elementary schools, has been learning about the importance of natural resources.
Then, when the troop began focusing on its community service project, the girls voted to collect bottled water to donate to the Salvation Army, which will deliver the clean water as needed.
From there, she said the scouts did the majority of the work, from reaching out to other troops to contacting the Salvation Army.
“It does take a whole network of support to make a difference,” she said.
In addition to serving others, Mandolfo said this project teaches the girls how to encourage and motivate others to serve, which is why it is important the scouts themselves have done most of the planning and acting.
The water bottles can be dropped off any time at the downtown fire station. If no one is present, Mandolfo said water can be left under the covered entry, and firefighters will store it upon return.
While the troop has no set goal for the collection, she said the troop hopes for a good turn out and encourages everyone to make a donation. Already, however, she said she is thankful for the willingness seen within the community.
“It’s been great to have that community support,” she said.