Girl Scouts from Troop 29430 at Our Lady of the Assumption Elementary School show off birdhouses they decorated as a service project for the Dunwoody Community Garden. From left, Abby Johnson, Bella Cabibi, Lauren Kim, Francesca Walker, Katie Wojna, Lauren Natsch, Ava Massey, Tegan Siksta and Hallye Loeffler.

By Tom Oder

The Girl Scouts in Troop 29430 at Our Lady of the Assumption Elementary School have earned a flock of new friends, feathered and unfeathered, with a birdhouse service project they undertook on behalf of the Dunwoody Community Garden.

The girls, mostly from Brookhaven, and friends since they were Daisy Scouts, decorated 12 birdhouses during a meeting earlier this month. Last Saturday, as one of the girl’s moms played the sound of a bird singing from a cellphone app, nine girls from the troop presented the birdhouses to Community Garden leaders at the garden in Brook Run Park.

The girls made the presentation at a birdbath in the orchid entrance to the garden. A sign in front of the birdbath designating the garden as a wildlife sanctuary registered with the Atlanta Audubon Society attested to the timeliness of the project and presentation. The garden was awarded the certification earlier this year.

“This is just what I like to see, youth contribution and artwork,” said Community Garden Chairman Nicole Maslanka. “This is a combination that really enlivens the spirit of a Community Garden.”

Scouts participating in the presentation at the garden were Abby Johnson, Bella Cabibi, Lauren Kim, Francesca Walker, Katie Wojna, Lauren Natsch, Ava Massey, Tegan Siksta and Hallye Loeffler. Maslanka and Garden Vice Chairman Art Simon, who led the effort to win the Audubon certification, accepted the birdhouses on behalf of the garden.

The scouts got the idea for the birdhouse project when they were working on another Community Garden project last year. That effort involved cleaning pots and tidying up the area around the greenhouse in the park. During that project, Diana Wood, who was managing the Community Garden portion of the greenhouse, gave the girls some birdhouses to paint to help beautify the garden. The girls decided to turn that gift into a second Community Garden service project.

The troop purchased several more birdhouses and spent an afternoon painting and decorating them. When parents arrived to pick up their daughters, “the girls were having so much fun they wanted to keep on working and keep adding more details,” said Mary Natsch, a mom of one of the scouts.