DEWITT, Ark.- It’s prom week at DeWitt High School, and Sydney Dumond is busily transforming the school cafeteria into the City of Lights.
A Girl Scout since she was in kindergarten, Sydney grew up helping deliver flowers for her grandmother’s florist, and it got her thinking.
“If I couldn’t find the house numbers or address numbers, how could the emergency vehicles, people from out of town or even the pharmacies who deliver?” Dumond asked.
She turned the problem into her Girl Scout Gold Award Project, called “Numbers for Safety”.
“There is 1,168,” she said.
Sydney created a color-coded list of every home and business in town.
“And we visited every single one,” she recalled. “We went up and down every street.”
That was no small task.
“At least 80 hours,” Dumond said.
Manpower her city didn’t have.
“They were really surprised that a 14-year-old would even get out and be off the phone long enough to even do something,” she said.
Sydney designed flyers to help bring those who weren’t in compliance up to code, with clearly posted street addresses.
Her work has motivated others her age to take action.
“They’ve started to imitate what I’ve been doing,” Dumond said. “And now, they are getting out and doing community service, which is awesome to see.”
Sydney is also active in agriculture, where she served as Miss Arkansas County Rice, and the DeWitt Chamber of Commerce named her the Citizen of the Year.
“I was surprised that my hard work paid off,” said Dumond.
From prepping for prom to receiving her biggest honor yet at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion, Sydney Dumond’s service may someday save a life.
“No matter how many awards I get, if I was able to help responders get anywhere a second faster, it makes everything worth it,” she said.
Sydney also has a twin sister who is equally accomplished.
On Thursday, Sydney and the other Community Service Award recipients will be honored at a banquet at the Governor’s Mansion.