Randall Womack, a Chapel Haven community member, has achieved a lot in his life, including gaining his own, independent life through Chapel Haven’s REACH program and continuing to grow his career as a Christian rapper.
And now, Randy can add the rank of Eagle Scout to his roster.
Eagle Scout is the highest rank that a Boy Scout can achieve, and requires a major combination of organization, fundraising, leadership and tenacity. Randy undertook a project to beautify the landscaping for Trinity on Main, a former church in New Britain built in the 1890s that was saved from the wrecking ball by a devoted group of citizens and turned into a performing arts center.
By all accounts, Randy did an amazing job. He raised $2,200 for his project and mustered a group of determined volunteers to help him, mostly on weekends.
“As a scout, I have learned to not let my autism get the best of me but to use my determination, scout traits, experiences and gained skills to overcome any barriers,” Randy said.
Randy had an ambitious set of tasks ahead – to clear the exterior of the building of vines, paint doors, lay down mulch, plant grass and seed new plantings and flowers. General Manager Gary Robinson said Randy’s project was “a blessing.”
“We are almost entirely volunteer run so any time we can get help is a blessing for us,” Gary said. “The project went very well. They certainly made the place look a lot better and put in a great deal of effort and time. I was very pleased with the results,” and many visitors to the building are commenting on the difference, Gary said.
Scout Master Phil Pepin said Randy “was most determined on completing this project as way of not just given back to the organization there, but to his community.”
Earning the Eagle Scout designation is a tall order. In order to do the project, Randy explained that he had to:
• “Arrange a meeting with Gary Robinson to talk about what I wanted to do for the project – I wanted to make Trinity on Main beautiful again”
• Gather the necessary equipment – gloves, rakes, shovels, mulch, plantings
• Raise money
• Find volunteers to help him
In just a few months, Randy managed to raise $2200, through a Go Fund Me page, through dinners, donations, selling candy, recycling bottles and cans and contributing some of his own funds.
And Randy had to get volunteers together to help him out – through Facebook, email and personal invitations. He spent many hours with a volunteer crew, gardening, shoveling rocks, painting handrails and doors, and even installing some wood to rainproof the windows. They worked all through the summer, mostly on weekends.
His mother, Lavonne Womack, said the project was a family affair, with the family helping Randy on weekends.
“He did a great job,” she said of her son. “We all worked hard.” She noted that there were “a lot of blood, sweat and tears a lot of the time” and Randy admits he broke down in tears more than once trying to coordinate all the components of the projects. But Mom says, the final project “was well worth it. And I heard from the general manager that they are still getting compliments.”
Congrats, Randy, we are so proud of you!