c58cc8b7479db61e188bf1679ba94fa9-2In his quest for the ultimate honor as a Boy Scout—the Eagle Award—18-year-old Nirmalya Bandopadhyay took on a project that would benefit the community at large. A detailed project plan and nearly 200 man-hours later, Corner House Counseling Center of Princeton, N.J., had a sparkling new resource center converted from two large storage rooms. With permission from the center’s executive director, Gary De Blasio, Bandopadhyay and over 15 volunteers cleaned, painted, and organized the contents of two storage rooms. The new resource center will open soon and serve the community with information on alcohol, tobacco, drugs, parenting, a video library, and a Spanish section.

The Corner House is a non-profit counseling center for the Greater Princeton Area and focuses on addressing the issues surrounding drug use and abuse in the Princeton community.

Speaking of his motivation for the project, Bandopadhyay says, “I wanted to continue my work in the drug education field. I spent two years working for an organization called the Teen Advisory Group (TAG) to the Princeton Alcohol and Drug Alliance (PADA) where we ran workshops, presentations, and performed skits in the hope of increasing drug awareness and dispersing information. … I wanted to build the resource center to continue my work in this field.”

Early this year, Bandopadhyay received his Eagle Award. He plans to study law and continue working for social causes. “As an Eagle Scout who will continue in the boy scouts and have a juris doctorate, I will also make it a point to challenge the Boy Scouts’ policy of not allowing openly homosexual adults to be leaders in boy scouting … and do my best to fight for the rights of boy scouts who do not come from a monotheistic background, as well as boy scouts who are atheists,” he says.

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