CINCINNATI, Ohio – Only around 2 percent of the approximately 2.2 million members of the Boy Scouts of America will ever reach the rank of Eagle Scout—the most prestigious and treasured rank in the scouts.
Deer Park sophomore Grant Edwards took a big step in the process with the completion of his service project, a Little Library and food pantry located on the Holmes Elementary property. Both of these projects are intended to help make a positive contribution to the Deer Park community.
“The Little Library idea came to me during a camping trip at Marengo Caves, where I saw my first ever Little Library,” Grant said. “I was at a standstill on what I wanted to do for my Eagle Project because I didn’t want to do something boring and generic.”
The process of completing an Eagle Scout Service Project is extremely detailed, including approval from BSA, recruiting and supervising volunteers, and the actual build, which Grant said took about two weeks on five work days.
“We painted, planted soil and flower seeds, drilled the wood, assembled, and sanded the wood,” Grant said. “With help from my Project Management teacher Mr. Gergen giving me knowledge on how to lead, and my Dad helping transport us and helping all around, I feel the project was a success.”
The idea behind a Little Library is a large box filled with books. When someone comes to “check out” a book, they replace it with another book. As the process continues, the books are continuously changed out, creating a library for students and adults alike. While the Little Library is primarily designed with books for students, Grant said he wanted to make sure it included books for adults, as well.
“We came to find out that people throughout the neighborhood were seeking to have a Little Library in our town,” he said. “At the end of it all, I wanted people in the community to have access to books and reading at all times even if the public library is closed.”
The process of developing and building the Little Library has lasted the better part of a year, but as the effects of COVID-19 hit the entire country, Grant said a side project came into focus over the last month.
“Some of the families in our town are in need of small essentials such as toiletries and canned goods, so we wanted to help,” Grant said. “We decided to give back to our community with this Food Pantry in high hopes that others would benefit.”
Thus, the Essentials Pantry was born. Grant and his father began building the pantry on Friday, April 3, and installed it next to the Little Library the following Monday.
Grant has just a few more steps to officially earn his Eagle rank, including a board review from members of the Boy Scouts of America Council. This project certainly pushes him forward in the process, and all of Deer Park is proud and grateful for his contributions to our community!
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