Jack Arends’ Eagle project was to build two shade structures, refurbish a picnic table, and build a hexagon picnic table for Austin Pets Alive!, the largest no kill shelter in the U.S. This has always been an important organization for him and his family. They not only fostered and walked dogs for APA but also adopted a dog from APA.
For Arends, scouts was always about the skills he learned for practical use like cooking, and for emergencies like wilderness survival and first aid. He was happy to do things with his friends and learn about leadership, public speaking, and organization in one of the few places where making a mistake isn’t fatal.
He says the skills he learned and the opportunities he had in scouting will make him a stronger, better and more prepared person in the future
Forrest Norrod’s Eagle project involved the construction of artificial bee hives and the creation of a pollinator garden. His project was conducted at Community First! Village, a homeless rehabilitation community just east of Austin.
He has grown as a person, and is very glad that he stuck with scouting these past 10 years and is looking forward to seeing where it will take him in the future.
Ezra Garces’ Eagle project consisted of installing solar-lights down a path at Community First! Village, that helps homeless individuals with housing. The hardest part was the fundraising, since the solar light poles were extremely expensive.
The love for the military has consistently grown throughout his life, and becoming a leader in the United States Army will complete his life’s goal of serving his country and its citizens.
Ewan Hassall became a scout when he moved to the U.S. from the United Kingdom when he was 7. His Eagle Project was building a firewood storage box for the Community First Village, which helps to rehabilitate and reintegrate homeless individuals by providing housing. One of the central themes of Community First, is “community.” One of the most important activities at the village is bonfires to celebrate just about everything. The wood had always been on the ground in a pile and when they wanted to build a fire, it was usually wet and unusable. Hassall’s firebox was not some box that sits next to a fireplace. This was an 8- foot-long, 6-foot-high, 4 foot deep structure with a roof that could hold many cords of wood. The residences were overjoyed when this project was completed.
Michael Meador’s Eagle project was for Wags, Hope and Healing, a non-profit that rescues, rehabilitates, and finds a home for dogs. His love for animals – especially dogs – drove him to this project. He designed, and built a playground dog ramp, and two doggie adventure boxes to provide stimulation with a variety of playthings. This adventure box is a fun activity structure that provides a colorful background for adoption photos. Happy dogs find their forever home faster.
Mason Tyler’s Eagle project involved converting an unusable section of land at the Jeremiah Program Austin in East Austin into a reading/reflection area for the single mothers that reside at the facility. The Jeremiah program helps single mothers live in a safe secured area where they can excel in the workforce and readies their children to succeed in school and reduces generational dependence on public assistance. Mason designed, and constructed benches and several bird houses, cut down a dead 50-foot tree, and cleared and laid two pallets of mulch converting the area into usable space.
When a family friend, Lt. Colonel Barry Morrison learned Tyler was working on his Aviation MB he quickly offered to take him on a flight in his Cessna airplane to help him complete the merit badge. Colonel Morrison flew into the Georgetown airport, picked up Mason and his father to go on a flight around the Hill Country where Tylern was able to fly the plane in the co-pilot seat.
Upon landing, Colonel Morrison proceeded to present Tyler with a set of aviator wings as a congratulations on his first flight. Later, Mason found out those aviator wings were Colonel Morrison’s “actual aviator wings” he was presented in the Army when he earned his pilot’s wings. Both of Colonel Morrison’s sons were Eagle Scouts and it is a testament of how the scouting world provides amazing individuals who constantly give back to the program when an opportunity presents itself.