Reading for Recovery

Teresa Shockley, Prairie Village, Kansas

Teresa Shockley is a Girl Scout Ambassador on a mission to help teens in her community find a path to recovery from mental illness with a unique tool - reading. After suffering from self-injury, depression and anxiety, Teresa knew she wanted to make a difference in her community and help others recover from something that was so difficult for her. “I picked this project because I struggled with these challenges myself and my friends have struggled as well. I really improved in my life, so I wanted to help others find their own road to recovery,” Teresa said. Because of donors like you, Teresa was able to develop an innovative plan through Girl Scouts, to help teens in Kansas City.

Teresa found that reading was a successful treatment for her journey to recovery and she wanted to make books and music that were particularly helpful accessible to struggling teens. By investing in “Little Free Libraries” that she assembled and painted orange, the color of self-injury awareness, she was able to provide a home for her books. Working with local therapy centers and libraries, she successfully installed her libraries and began filling them with books specifically selected to help others on their road to recovery. In addition, Teresa placed song lists in the libraries and notes in each book as to why that book was powerful in her own journey.

As Teresa says, “Everything [Girl Scouts] does is good. We work with mental health projects, physical health projects, animal shelters, food pantries, everything. No matter what you care about, Girl Scouts is doing something good for it.” That’s why she’s proud to have earned her Girl Scout Gold Award through this incredible act of service to her community. Thanks to you, Gold Award projects like Teresa’s “Reading for Recovery” program have the power to make a lasting impact around the council. We thank you for supporting an organization that empowers girls to find unique ways to give back to the community through causes they’re passionate about. You can learn more about Teresa’s powerful project by visiting our blog (!