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Gold Awardee Ava Davis: Meeting an Obvious Community Need by Building a Bus Shelter

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Ava Davis, a senior at Indian Springs School, earned the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest honor a Girl Scout can earn. Davis earned her Gold Award for her project, “Girls Build Birmingham.” Her project focused on the lack of shelters at bus stops around Birmingham. Bus riders stand in wind, storms, and direct sun while waiting for the bus. To tackle this issue, she built a structure with a roof and bench in Woodlawn.

Davis first had to find a location where the property owner would agree to the project. She then presented her project to the Birmingham Jefferson County Transit Authority and spoke to officials and members of the community. And while not knowing much about architecture and engineering, she led a team of adults in constructing the shelter.

“I learned that when you are young, you are not taken seriously at first, but if you are confident, persistent, and show that you know what you are doing people will respect you,” Davis said. “I learned that I should never take no for an answer, because this project wasn’t for me but for others.”

For the sustainability portion of her Gold Award project, Davis created an instruction book detailing how to construct the shelter, who to contact, and what materials are needed.

“My project shows how easy it is to fix this problem,” Davis said. “Nationally and globally, I hope to inspire girls to go out of their comfort zone and make a change in their communities.”

Davis said she has been thanked by community members and sees the structure being used every day she drives to school.

The girl who goes for the Gold embraces challenges, achieves excellence, and works diligently to make the world a better place, in her own unique way. Her leadership, vision, and boundless energy is an inspiration to all Girl Scouts. Each girl earning her Gold Award demonstrates excellence through a leadership project totaling more than 65 hours. Girls who earn their Gold Award are also recognized by the President of the United States, the U.S. Congress, the U.S. Armed Services, state legislatures, colleges and universities for admission and scholarship opportunities, and the American Legion. Some universities and colleges offer scholarships unique to Gold Award recipients, and girls who enlist in the U.S. Armed Forces may receive advanced rank in recognition of their achievements.

About Girl Scout Gold Award
Since 1916, Girl Scouts have been making meaningful, sustainable change in their communities and around the world. The Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest honor a Girl Scout can earn, acknowledges the power behind each recipient’s dedication to not only empowering and bettering herself, but also to making the world a better place for others. These young women are courageous leaders and visionary change makers. They are our future, and it looks bright! To learn more about the Girl Scout Gold Award, visit

About Girl Scouts of North-Central Alabama

We're over 13,000 strong—9,500 girls and 3,800 adults in 36 counties in the state of Alabama who believe girls can change the world. It began over 100 years ago with one woman, Girl Scouts' founder Juliette Gordon "Daisy" Low, who believed in the power of every girl. She organized the first Girl Scout troop on March 12, 1912, in Savannah, Georgia, and every year since, we've made her vision a reality, helping girls discover their strengths, passions, and talents.

Today we continue the Girl Scout mission of building girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. Girl Scouts is the preeminent leadership development organization for girls. Girl Scouts of North-Central Alabama is a United Way partner. To volunteer, reconnect, donate, or join, visit or call 800-734-4541.