By Robin Clutters

ARVADA, Colo. (CBS4)– A Girl Scout in Arvada is receiving national attention. Julia Trujillo is one of only ten teens in the country to be named a National Gold Award Girl Scout. While she was a senior at Arvada West High School, she tackled the lack of accessible menstrual products in Colorado schools.

“It’s really such an honor. I’m so grateful for all the experiences that I’ve had because of this and the people that I’m getting to meet,” says Trujillo. “It’s really surreal to be recognized amongst such amazing world changing, other young women.”

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Julia’s project took on the stigma of periods. As the creator of Arvada West’s Intersectional Feminist Club, she worked to get menstrual product dispensers in the school’s restrooms. She decided to do it after she distributed a survey at her school that found 76% of students said they had left or missed school due to a lack of access to menstrual products.

“It was an eight-month campaign to get three dispensers and a year’s supply of products,” says Trujillo. “It just made me realize that this was going to be this much of an issue for girls everywhere in my state, so I wanted to address it through legislation on a grander level.”

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So Trujillo partnered with Colorado State Representative Brianna Titone to create a legislative action committee, which then introduced a bill to end period poverty and stigma in schools.

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“I got to testify on behalf of the bill before the committee. I was honestly very pleasantly surprised by how receptive most legislators were to my voice and my ideas, which I kind of think is just a testament to the fact that policymakers genuinely want to hear from us.”

Besides the prestigious National Gold Award, Julia was also selected to be the Girl Scouts’ representative at the United Nation’s “Girls Speak Out: Girl’s Rights Townhall.” Trujillo says none of this would have been possible without her years as a scout.

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“I think that being a Girl Scout is definitely one of the biggest influences on who I am today. The value that I place on service and activism can 100% be credited to the Girl Scouts.”

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Trujillo graduated from Arvada West in May and is heading to college in Oregon in January.

Robin Clutters