Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Girl Scout Testimony Heightens Outdoor Bill

Girl Scout Jenny Reich, 17, brought grins to the faces of California state senators as she testified today in support of Sierra Club California-sponsored AB 2989 (Fuentes).

Although afraid of heights, Jenny testified, she once climbed Mount Shasta with a group of fellow Girl Scouts. The experience taught her a valuable lesson, she told the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Water.

“I was able to make it up the mountain, and that really helped my self-confidence grow,” she said. “I think that all kids ought to have the opportunity to get outdoors like I did.”

Studies show that getting kids outdoors not only helps their self-esteem, it also improves their science test scores. Outdoor activity could be one weapon against the rising rate of youth obesity as well.

Jenny’s enthusiasm for outdoor activity charmed the lawmakers.

“It means a lot when young people come to the Capitol,” said Senator Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, who chairs the committee. “I hope we can find the funding – private or otherwise – to support this bill.”

Assemblymember Felipe Fuentes (pictured with Jenny) worked hard on the bill to guide it through the Assembly. Now, support from the Senate is needed to get the bill to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s desk.

Watch What 'Desperate Housewives' Star Marcia Cross Says About Outdoor Opportunities For Youth (Video)

Learn More About Sierra Club's Efforts to "Build Bridges To The Outdoors"

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