Written by Press Corps member Keena Dietz
The air in the convention center was buzzing with conversations. Booths lined the walls displaying information on new and old programs alike. In another room, tables and a stage fill the space. Soon, women arrive onstage and the cheers echo from the walls. They speak about how grateful they are that everyone is here tonight to honor these four amazing women and two amazing young women as they receive their Women of Distinction awards.
Several Women of Distinction awards are granted every year. This award honors women and young women who are doing incredible things in their community, who are making a real change in the world, or who are helping others.
One of the Young Women of Distinction was a ConnectZ girl. I had heard about the ConnectZ program before and was always fascinated with the program but wanted to learn more. When I heard there was a fundraising booth for ConnectZ at the Women of Distinction gala, I knew I had to go talk to them.
The Girl Scout I got a chance to speak with was Blessing Roberts (pictured above seated second from the left in red), president of her school’s ConnectZ program. The interview I had with her was amazing, and I can’t wait to share it with you! Below are her answers to my questions, lightly edited for space.
How did you get to where you are today?
“When I see something that I like, I like to be a part of it. With Girl Scouts Connectz at my school, I’m the president. And with other groups at my school, I’m very involved. We have Key Club, which empowers youth to volunteer, and I’m the publicist. And then we have Dare to Be Bold, which strives for equity and equality and we talk about social issues, and I’m one of the captains. So, when it comes to things like this, this is just what I like to do. And if I see it has a positive effect on my life and on other people’s lives, I want to make sure it keeps going. I have a niece, and I would love for her to be a part of all the groups I just said and more.”
How do you think Girl Scouts helps inspire girls?
“I’ve seen a lot of things. I’m not going to go through my history, but I’ve seen a lot of things and if you see women unite—it’s like seeing African Americans unite. If I go to an event and I see black people empowered and getting educated, helping each other learn, that helps me like it, because it gives me so much strength. When we come together and when we work together towards something that’s positive, it’s one of the best feelings in the world. Just like being here right now.”
Do you think the Women of Distinction award is helpful? If so, why?
“I do think it’s very helpful, because we all put in the same energy. We all put in the same work, but if a woman goes beyond, if a woman puts her entire life into something, that needs to be appreciated. If someone does something like this, they’re not doing it for appreciation, but I feel it needs to be acknowledged. Like Connectz--you don’t think of it as saving lives, but you’re saving girls emotionally and mentally. You’re helping them grow.”
What advice do you have for girls seeking to inspire others?
“My advice is to stay true to yourself. I feel like that’s such a common saying, it’s mad corny now, but it’s common because it’s very, very true. The better you get, the better you can help others. The more you educate yourself, the more you learn, the more competitions you go into, the more environments you go into, all that expands you as a person and helps you grow. So, to all the girls out there, educate yourself, try to grow, try things that benefit you. No matter what you’re doing, no matter where you are, no matter how bad your situation might be, just know that you can do it. If you believe in yourself and help yourself grow, you’ll also help other people.”
Thank you so much to Blessing Roberts for sharing her thoughts. I loved speaking with her and learning more about the ConnectZ program and the people in it!
Want to be part of the Girl Scouts River Valleys Press Corps? Visit the Press Corps page to learn more about how you can join the team!