Giving back to community with their Eagle Scout projects
Completing his Eagle Scout project during a pandemic was a challenge for Caleb Standley. He wasn’t able to participate in a lot of activities, including his last summer camp as a scout, but he was determined to do something worthwhile and give back to the community. The Woodford County High School senior said he saw a need so he designed (with help from his dad) and helped build two cat towers and an agility course for the dogs at the Woodford Humane Society. He and other scouts in Troop 14 put in 183 hours of work on his Eagle Scout project, which he delivered to the humane society in August – only days before his 18th birthday (the deadline for scouts to complete projects in non-pandemic years). “The initiative he took as a young man his age (to complete this project) was so astounding. I was just blown away by it,” Shelby Slone, community outreach director at the Woodford Humane Society, said. Much of the agility course was completed under the pavilion outside Versailles Methodist Church so scouts could work on the project while socially distanced, explained Paul Standley, assistant scoutmaster and Caleb’s dad. Because they were spread out, Caleb faced a few challenges while overseeing the work. “It was very crucial for me to make sure that they (younger scouts) were doing it the right way,” said Caleb. He knows the agility course will be used during the humane society’s canine Olympics so he wants it to last for years to come. For Caleb, finishing his Eagle Scout project and being able to give back was a culmination of a journey that began when he was a Tiger Scout in first grade. The many skills he learned in scouting will last him a lifetime, said Paul Standley. “Scouts teach the kids to be independent, to be able to take care of themselves,” he explained. Asked what he planned to do after graduating from WCHS, Caleb said he’s interested in becoming a mechanical engineer or an auto mechanic.
People walking on the trails at Woodford County Park now have mileage markers to help guide their journeys because of the Eagle Scout project undertaken by Caleb Jacobs. Color-coded markers tell someone if they’re walking the one-, two or three-mile trail. “It was really her idea,” said Caleb, gesturing to his mom Lauren. “I just did all the work.” The Woodford County High School senior knew the trail had no directions for walkers so he thought adding mile markers would be a nice addition. “I know it’s going to be here for awhile, a long time hopefully,” said Caleb. He and scouts from Lexington-based Troop 103 also built two benches along the walking trails at Woodford County Park. Caleb joined a troop outside of Woodford County because he’d attended Lexington Catholic and had friends there. He quit Troop 1784 in Versailles because scouts were leaving and its charter wasn’t renewed. “I thought it was a better idea to stick in out because I was so close to being finished,” said Caleb of rejoining Boy Scouts. He completed his Eagle Scout project about a month before his 18th birthday on Feb. 26. “I’m just glad ... I finally pushed through and finished it,” he added. Lauren Jacobs said watching her son become an Eagle Scout was a proud moment, because Caleb often pushed himself to the limits as a Boy Scout. He climbed mountains and canoed rivers, but also traveled to France after meeting some kids from the Middle East at scout camp, his mom explained.