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Eagle Scout Project Honors Northern Westchester Hospital’s Courageous Healthcare Workers

Zachary Couzens, a 17-year-old from Mahopac, NY, is building a COVID-19 Memorial Garden for Northern Westchester Hospital healthcare workers for his Eagle Scout Project. Photo Credit: Alex Couzens
Funds that exceed Zachary's goal will go directly to Northern Westchester Hospital for annual replanting. Photo Credit: Alex Couzens

It’s quite an achievement to become an Eagle Scout. Only five percent of all Boy Scouts ever reach that pinnacle. Undaunted, Zack Couzens of Mahopac is hoping to earn the title with a very personal project.

Zack is creating a COVID-19 Memorial Garden for Northern Westchester Hospital healthcare workers. According to the Hackley School student, the goal is to build and fill 27 six-feet-by-three-feet raised garden beds to grow produce in the spring. The crops will provide food for patients in need and for those in the surrounding area who face food insecurity—especially in times of COVID-19.

Unfortunately, 17-year-old Zack is all too familiar with the virus. In the spring of 2020, he and his brother Jake found themselves home alone as both mom, Alex, and dad, Jay, were hospitalized with COVID complications. It was a scary time, but he knew his parents were receiving the best care possible at Northern Westchester Hospital. Alex was home after a week. Jay, however, spent four weeks in the hospital, and needed the support of a ventilator on his worst days. As Zack puts it, "Everyone has since recovered, largely in part due to the extraordinary care we received by NWH's healthcare providers."

“To give back to the hospital, I wanted to dedicate my Eagle Scout Project to Northern Westchester Hospital and do everything I can to repay them for all they've done for my family,” Zack explained on the GoFundMe page he started for the project. Donations will be used to purchase supplies such as tools, materials, and the plants needed to complete his project come this spring, as well as a sign to commemorate the courageous healthcare workers.

Please consider joining Zack by giving a donation to the COVID-19 Memorial Garden, to help those in need and support Northern Westchester Hospital.

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