The #1 thought that comes to mind when the name of PACE arises is that the program is so successful! Through education, counseling, training and advocacy one can watch an at-risk girl enter the program as a sullen, obstinant person and within weeks turn herself around to wanting to be a productive member of society. This is a nationally recognized program with a proven success rate!
When you look into the eyes of a PACE Girl you see a sparkle of a dream that turns into a reality through PACE due to everyone's continued dedication this fine organization. I just can't let that sparkle die and will continue to help light the flame for these girls to achieve their dreams.
I love this organization. I have been involved with them in various capacities for at least eight years now. The atmoshpere provided for these girls is both positive and happy. It has truned many lives around. Board members go out of their way to see that the center gets what it needs to continue to support these young ladies, and they have fun doing it. Every member of the staff makes the welfare of these girls come first, and it really shows. Every person associated with the center, from the director down to the students, participates in fundraising. Board members plan events, faculty and parents attend, and the students either decorate or put on programs. It's all a part of the PACE spirit!
PACE is unlike any non-profit I have had the pleasure and privilege of serving. I know for a fact that every dollar invested in the PACE program will result in a change of life for the girls at the school. I have personally witnessed angry, disenchanted girls transforming into confident and ambitious young women after going through the program. The staff is not only knowledgeable, but also displays a limitless compassion and optimism that is infectious. It is my personal honor to serve on the board and I will remain on the board as long as they will have me.
I have served on the PACE Board for six years and I continue to be amazed at how girls who are victimized, abused and at risk, eventually find their voices and begin to believe in themselves. Once this transformation occurs, there is no turning back. They begin to achieve academically and gain personal pride in their achievements. They learn to respect themselves and others and they become a natural support system for each other. PACE is just a place to learn and be counseled, it is a place to heal. PACE is a model program that should be duplicated nationally. PACE makes a difference without lockups and humiliation. PACE builds dignity. PACE works. Shortcomings? Not enough funding to attract, hire and retain teachers particularly in math and science.
PACE Center for Girls is an outstanding organization committed to the encouragement, development, growth, education and nurturing of girls and young women who have been victims of abuse - physical, emotional, and sexual. Gail Markham was kind to invite me to participate in the development of the Center here in Lee County. Watching the girls grow and blossom as they come into the system from dysfunctional and often non existant family lives into girls that have self esteem and extroadinary academic improvement.
PACE is an unbelievable opportunity for young women to have a second chance at life. This center is for girls whose lives had been traveling down a very destructive path, for a variety of reasons. PACE assists the girls in understanding what has transpired in their lives to get to such a tragic state, and allows them a safe environment to work through these emotional challenges, and to rebuild their esteem and confidence. It assists them in making different choices for their future. It has them interact with community leaders and supporters to show them that many successful and happy folks had similar bumps in the road. And it keeps these young ladies out of jail, giving them the chance to become our future leaders through the academic and emotional growth facilitated by the amazing staff and teachers. I feel blessed and honored to serve this program!
PACE School for Girls makes a difference in the lives of at-risk girls in Florida. PACE gives girls who aren't doing well adjusting to regular school the type of family atmosphere that they need to feel valued and special. PACE helps girls who have suffered abuse and hurt in their lives see their great value to our community! PACE Alachua has been known to do anything to serve girls. Whether it is facilitating dentist appointments or finding community members willing to renovate a bathroom, PACE finds the issues preventing girls from doing their best and works tirelessly to solve those issues!
PACE Center of Girls is a way for girls to have a second chance to succeed. It is a way for girls to avoid juvenile detention centers and jail. PACE allows girls to not only get the academic teaching they need, it also allows them to build their self confidence, learn to control and deal with their anger and plan for the future. PACE gives girls hope, encouragement and a place to dream with teachers and counselors who believe in them.
Pace Center for Girls helps girls catch-up on school work so they can graduate from high school and become a valuable members of society. Often the girls are so far behind academically that they need more help than a teacher can offer. We put on events that raise money for extras like tutors, field trips and even occasional dental work.