Brownie Scout undertakes food from the heart project

ALLISON BAKER, A BROWNIE SCOUT with Troop 1963, poses with one of the boxes of non-perishable items she collected during a food drive she organized for the Naples Food Pantry. (De Busk Photo)

ALLISON BAKER, A BROWNIE SCOUT with Troop 1963, poses with one of the boxes of non-perishable items she collected during a food drive she organized for the Naples Food Pantry. (De Busk Photo)

By Dawn De Busk

Staff Writer

NAPLES — Nine-year-old Allison Baker believes that part of being a Girl Scout is being kind to others.

When she had the opportunity to organize a project for her troop, she decided to organize a food drive for the Naples Food Pantry, a town-based service that serves 30 families.

“I thought of the idea because I knew it would be for a good cause. I knew it would be the type of thing a Girl Scout would do,” she said.

Allison belongs to Brownie Girl Scout Troop 1963; and each girl was allowed to choose a badge and lead a meeting designed to earn the badge.

Allison said her food drive involved several steps, and took almost two weeks to complete.

“I’ve done a lot of work on this. I thought of the places to take the boxes; and my mom helped some. I asked all the businesses if they would be okay with having a food drive box there,” she said.

Then, Allison distributed the flyers she had made to publicize the food drive.

On Tuesday, troop members helped decorate the boxes that Allison and her mother had covered with old wrapping paper. Everyone assisted in decorating the boxes designed to be filled with food, Allison said.

Local businesses involved in the food drive included Aubuchon Hardware, Jewlz Beyond Hair, Naples Veterinary Clinic, Naples Professional Building and Sabre Yachts in Raymond.

Early on during the project, Allison’s mom Meagan made a pledge to double the number of food items collected.

“I just didn’t know how many things she would get. It could be 10. So, I told her I would double it,” Meagan Baker said.

Mom does not mind the grocery store errand ahead of her because she is proud of her daughter’s accomplishment.

Allison was also incredibly excited about a couple things that happened during her food drive experience.

“A cool fact is that after we collected all the boxes, Jewlz called and said someone had brought in two big bags of food,” she said.

That generous gesture increased the total number of items that initially ended up the boxes during a weeklong period.

“The amount of items was 126. That is my birthday. January 26 was when I was born,” Allison said.

Allison and a few fellow scouts dropped off the food and put items on the shelves for the food pantry workers after school on Monday.

“It was fun doing the food drive,” Allison said. “It was a lot of work, but it was worth it. The food pantry will be happy because they will have all that food.”

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