Tribune-Review: Girl Scouts donate cookies for St. Clair Hospital cancer patients

Patients receiving treatment at the St. Clair Hospital Cancer Center got a special treat courtesy of Brownie and Junior Girl Scouts.

The third- and fourth-grade students of Troop 60187 in Upper St. Clair packed up nearly 150 boxes of Girl Scout cookies and delivered them in March to Dr. Vince Reyes. He is assistant medical director for the UPMC Hillman Cancer Center Medical Oncology Network and chief of hematology and medical oncology at St. Clair Health, located in Scott and Mt. Lebanon.

One of three troop leaders, Jeanette Benedetto, is a patient of Dr. Reyes, and her troop selected the Cancer Center for their Troop Gift of Caring cookie donation. Benedetto was diagnosed with a rare intestinal cancer a year ago, and following surgery and treatment, she is now cancer-free.

In her honor, the troop this year unanimously selected the Cancer Center for their Gift of Caring donation.

“We are able to have additional cookies at the end of our selling season because the girls ask customers to purchase an extra box to donate for their troop-selected organization,” Benedetto explained. “The Girl Scout cookie customers within the girls’ neighborhoods and at their three cookie booths this season generously donated a total of 137 boxes for us to donate for the cancer patients here at St. Clair.”

The Girl Scouts, who have been together since kindergarten, have a passion for community service. Their first Troop Gift of Caring cookie donation went to the Upper St. Clair Volunteer Fire Department in 2020. That same year, the girls made St. Patrick’s Day decorations for residents at Country Meadows and assembled homemade horse treats for Horses with Hope.

Other community service projects have included writing encouraging notes and providing care packages for people experiencing homelessness, spring cleanup efforts at historic Gilfillan Farm, a holiday toy drive for Washington County Children & Youth Services, and collecting food donations for South Hills Interfaith Movement.

“This will be a special treat for our patients,” said Dr. Reyes. “I’m so honored and proud of these young ladies who thought of our Cancer Center and our patients for this year’s Gift of Caring. And who doesn’t love Girl Scout cookies?”

Patients were invited to take a box home following their treatment thanks to this thoughtful and caring group of young girls.