While there are Girl Scout cookie booths all over town, the reasons to buy those cookies go way past their just being delicious. Girl Scouts encourage girls to step into activism and leadership, as exemplified by Ambassador Scout Shelby Hansen.
When Hansen chose to do her Gold Award, the top service project in Girls Scouts, she decided on a gun buyback. With the help of the Culver City Police and co-sponsor Albert Vera, Jr. it all came together on Jan. 12, 2019 from 10 am to 2 pm.
Hansen noted that she’d spent extensive time planning with the police and the co-sponsors, and expressed her gratitude for all the support. “Thanks to the City Council and Mayor Small for letting me do this, I’m grateful for your support. ”
In the parking lot in front of the Wende Museum, cars pulled into a line, greeted by a sing to unlock the trunk and stay seated in the car. The police then got the guns from those turning them over and secured the weapons. A total of 67 guns turned in from 65 people, and as a thank you, Hansen rewarded them with one $100 Target gift acrd per gun.
The police volunteered their time. The police officers volunteered their time, and took the guns to be melted down.
Lt. William Brown stated, “After we collected the firearms, we drove them out to to CMC Commercial Metals in Rancho Cucamonga. They melt down guns for police for free, so we were able to access the service.”
The guns were melted with scrap metal at a temperature of over 320 degrees in an electrical arc furnace, the cleanest process for steel. By using this high temperature melt, they save many tons of waste from iron ore, coal and limestone.
The melted guns were then given a new life as steel rebar.
Albert Vera, Jr. offered that he was surprised a the number of weapons turned in. “I was anticipating maybe a dozen, so the response was really great.”
If getting youth into community activism is one of your favorite flavors, it is a good day to buy some cookies.