Girl Scouts and Brownies all aRound town are reaching out to individuals both far and near through the scouts’ annual ‘Have a Heart’ project this Valentine’s Day.

The 21 kindergarten, first- and second-graders in YMCA Brownie Troop 40124 are speeding good wishes all the way to Iraq. Following up on holiday greetings they sent in December, they are preparing handmade Valentine cards and packages with such gifts as magazines, books and lotions for soldier Vicky Knoll and the two women who share her tight military quarters.

Several troops will be bringing their sunshine to senior citizens closer to home. Willard School fourth-graders in Junior Troop 1555 are connecting with individuals at the Presbyterian Homes. After choosing the name of a resident, each will write him or her a newsy letter and enclose it with a personalized Valentine and a picture of herself in a hand-decorated envelope.   

Troops 3486 and 43 are making cards for seniors at the Levy Senior Center and also for the Dawes School staff they describe as “traditionally underappreciated” – custodians, food service workers and crossing guards.

First-grade Daisies at Washington School will be visiting the soup-kitchen at Hemenway Church for the second time, decorating the dining hall for Valentine’s Day on Feb. 16 “so the soup-kitchen participants will ‘feel the love’ around this holiday,” they say.

Kingsley School Brownie Troop 98 will give the gift of time to residents of the Presbyterian Home, handing out more than 70 valentines they made for the occasion, and then partnering with the seniors for a spirited game of Bingo. They plan to share stories, along with valentine cookies.

Kingsley School’s first-grade Brownie Troop 130 observed the coming holiday by making valentines with seniors at Three Crowns Park.

And the fourth-grade Junior Scouts of Troop 24 will visit with patients on the Alzheimer’s Unit at Three Crowns. They plan to help them with memory exercises and to recognize the lives of these residents using interview sheets they have created to take oral histories.

Recipients of Valentine’s Day presents from Troop 1605’s third-grade Brownies at Orrington School, may not be able to put their appreciation into words: The scouts are making toys for cats and dogs at the Evanston Animal Shelter.