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Scout Crafts Shed for Community Garden

Matt Kowalski, RBR student and Eagle Scout, built shed for Shrewsbury Community Garden


The Shrewsbury Community Garden now has a shed for its equipment, thanks to the Eagle Scout work of Red Bank Regional High School (RBR) student and Shrewsbury resident Matthew Kowalski.

The garden, established a year ago by volunteers to beautify their community, had no shed in which to keep gardeners' equipment and protect it from theft, loss or rusting, according to a release. Now, thanks to a volunteer project coordinated and supervised by Kowalski in order to attain his Eagle Scout rank, the volunteers have a shed to call their own.

“We knew there was a great need for this project from people on the Shrewsbury Council, and the management and supervising skills made it a perfect project for an Eagle Scout,” Kowalski said in a released statement.

The project involved nine months' worth of planning, including meetings with the Shrewsbury Community Garden Committee to gauge the members' input on design and materials, the release said. After the planning, Kowalski and his Troop 50 volunteer scouts, with the help of a scout advisor and assistant scoutmaster, built the shed in a month.

Kowalski has bee a scout since age 6 and says that "one of the reasons I got involved in scouting was to learn leadership skills, which I think is perfect for teaching," the career path he has chosen. Recently he called his recent two-week back-packing wilderness trip to Philmont Scout Reservation through the rugged New Mexico terrain a "once in a a lifetime experience" and the highlight of his scouting career.

A student who has frequently been on honor roll, Kowalski takes classes at RBR’s Academy of Humanities and Social Sciences, which offers a challenging program.

He has a passion for bowling and history, is captain of the RBR bowling team, and would also like to teach history someday. In preparation for his teaching career, he recently completed a special program at RBR called Tomorrow’s Teachers which included a classroom field observation earning him both high school and college credit.  

“One of the reasons I got involved in scouting was to learn leadership skills, which I think is perfect for teaching," he said. “I wouldn’t mind coming back to teach a merit badge when I can.  It (scouting) was such an important part of my life. I want to give back.”


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