Her dedication to her scout group and community has earned Anna Simons a prestigious award.

This month Anna, a student at Hāwera High School, was presented with her Chief Scout's Award at the Stratford Scout Hut.

Anna is the first member of the Stratford Scouts to receive the award since the group restarted in 2007 after a 10-year recess.

The award recognises Anna's commitment to scouting, and to earn it she had to complete a variety of tasks from organising a camping trip to helping with other scout activities.


Anna says she has always loved scouts, and is thrilled to receive the award.

"I did want to earn it. It is something I knew was possible if I worked hard for it."

There are five sections of Scouting in New Zealand: Keas, Cubs, Scouts, Venturers and Rovers and each section has its own programme of activities, badges and awards.

Anna first joined the scouting movement as a Kea when she was six and says her progression through the sections was always good fun.

"I've always enjoyed coming along to the meetings and doing camps and everything. It is a commitment time wise, but it is worth it for the skills you gain as you go."

During her years as a scout alone, Anna has gained plenty of skills, earning herself badges which she sews onto a camp blanket as she goes.

"The blanket is a good record of my achievements, and it is something I will always keep and treasure."

Group leader Antoinette Buckley says the group are all proud of Anna's achievement.

"She has been an awesome scout because she has never given up on things. Even when she found something hard to do, she kept on at it until she got there, that dedication speaks for itself."