BY MATTHEW HIBBARD
ANCHOR CHANCE SEALES
You're watching multisource U.S. news analysis from Newsy
From thin mints to -- prosthetic hands?
They call themselves the Flying Monkeys. A Girl Scout team consisting of 11 to 13 year-old girls developed a prosthetic hand device called the BOB-1. A member of that team who has a limb difference was the inspiration for the project. The device is already being put to use.
This is Danielle. A three-year-old from Duluth, Georgia. The prosthetic arm the Flying Monkeys designed has helped her hold a pencil with her right arm and write for the first time.
The device can also help in everyday tasks like coloring, eating and personal grooming. The Flying Monkeys tell ABC, the best thing about their device is its potential to help even more children.
Girl Scout 1: “It is fun to be able to help people, it’s rewarding.”
Girl Scout 2: “If we could make more we would actually change other kid’s lives.”
Girl Scout 3: “It feels really good knowing that she can actually be able to do something she might not have been able to do with her right hand.”
The girls did their homework before designing the prosthetic arm. A writer for Popular Science explains the extent of their research.
“The Girl Scouts visited a prosthetics manufacturer and an occupational therapist to learn about existing prosthetics, and they learned they’re expensive and cumbersome, so they wanted to build something that was simple to put on and use.”
The Flying Monkeys received the Global Innovation Award and $20,000 to patent the invention. The girls were chosen by nearly 1 million people who visited the award website from 145 countries. One of girl’s mothers explains to NBC-affiliate WHO their excitement.
“The kids were all screaming and yelling, AHHHHHHH and jumping up and down and it was mind blowing. When they put their minds to it, there is nothing they cannot do.”
So is this intelligent piece of innovation enough to keep those Boy Scouts across the campfire at bay? A writer at Gizmodo says there’s a whole lot girl power leading the charge.
“While the Boy Scouts might have their ballyhooed robotics badge, it is actually the Girl Scouts who struck first in this pee-wee tech war...”
The Flying Monkeys are among more than 200 Girl Scout robotics teams across the US. It’s all part of an initiative to encourage children to focus on science, technology, engineering and math.
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