Chesterton Tribune



Sara Filipek earns Girl Scout Gold Award

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Chesterton Girl Scout Sara Filipek has earned the highest honor in Girl Scouting: the Gold Award, for her design of a concussion prevention program for local coaches.

Among other things, Filipek--who has sustained a concussion herself--organized with her physical therapist a concussion education and management clinic attended by some 200 athletic coaches from Northwest Indiana.

In addition, Filipek was instrumental in the installation of safety mats at Westchester Intermediate School, hung from the gym’s concrete walls to protect basketball players.

Filipek also authored a brochure on concussions to be linked to the websites of the Trojan Basketball Club and the Northwest Indiana Soccer League. That brochure--Concussion Awareness and Education--lists the symptoms of post-concussion syndrome; provides a number of on-field cognitive testing questions to be asked of potential concussion patients immediately after the injury; and discusses the dangers of the cumulative effects of repeated concussions.

“I feel the more people who are aware of concussion and proper concussion management, the more likely the youth will be protected from the negative consequences of mismanagement of these concussions,” Filipek wrote in her final Gold Award report. “I cannot prevent concussions but I can continue to be an advocate on the proper management of them when they happen.”

In March, Filipek joined the executive director of Girl Scouts of the USA, Anna Maria, Chavez, for a leadership breakfast on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., entitled “Minting Girl Scouts into the Next Century of Success.”

“As a Gold Award recipient, you have earned the highest achievement in Girl Scouting, demonstrating extraordinary leadership through a remarkable project that has made a sustainable impact in your community,” Chavez wrote in a letter to Filipek after the leadership breakfast.



Posted 4/25/2013