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Katelyn Preus earns Girl Scouts’ Silver Award for helping A New Leash on Life

MADISON – Katelyn Preus’ empathy for rescue animals resulted in her service project to earn the Silver Award with Girl Scouts.

“The Silver Award was (my) next milestone, the next challenge. It has to be done as a Cadette, and I’ll be a Senior Girl Scout this fall,” Preus said.

“Our project was great, and I want to help at animal shelters,” Preus said. “Natalie Zesinger, Lyla MacKrell and I worked on this together. We built cat towers with PVC pipe for the no-kill animal shelter, A New Leash on Life.”

The project required 50-plus hours to complete. “We researched designs, planned what materials and how much of everything was needed, waited for sales (we use our resources wisely!) and finally built the towers,” Preus said.

“We worked onsite only on installation day, which took us 30 minutes to put the towers together, but we spent over an hour playing with the kittens and learning about their new adoption center, A New Leash on Life,” Preus said.

Their project required PVC piping and fittings from Lowe’s and fabric from Joanne Fabrics. The Scouts earned money with cookie sales and received an anonymous donation from a woman at Joanne’s who overheard Katelyn explaining their project.

Mark Zesinger taught the girls how to cut PVC pipe. Janelle Zesinger taught the Scouts the ways to measure and cut the fabric. The Scouts used sewing machines at Madison Public Library to sew the panels. The fabric is ‘velcroed’ for easy cleaning.

The towers can adjust from three large units to several smaller ones.

“The cat towers will give comfort to the cats and fit more cats comfortably,” Katelyn said. “It gives the cats a chance to exercise and displays their playfulness to potential families.”

Katelyn is a freshman at Bob Jones High School. “I’m excited to be on Bob Jones Basketball Cheer Team,” Katelyn said. “I like to swim and be creative with all sorts of materials. I have volunteered at A New Leash on Life thrift store and want to help in their new shelter when it’s ready.”

Katelyn’s parents are Erik and Erica Preus.

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