Nonprofit Spotlight: PACE Center for Girls, Pasco

Tampa Bay Moms Blog spotlights one local nonprofit each month. Our goal is to bring awareness to our readers with nonprofit organizations that are making an impact in Tampa Bay through their connection and work in the community.

But for the grace of God…

There are so many times in my life that I have had that thought in regard to myself, my family, my three girls. I see tragic events occur every day to people. People who are undeserving of the painful events that find them, and change their lives forever. I am forever grateful and appreciative for all of the ways my loved ones and myself have been spared.

Almost six years ago, I began working with the PACE Center for Girls in Pasco County as a board member, and eventually served as Chair of the Board of Directors. I continue to work on this Board no matter what other things come into my life and will continue to serve for as long as they will have me. 

If you haven’t heard of PACE, I implore you to reach out to your local center and take a tour. The girls at PACE Centers have endured various hardships, ranging from medical or mental health issues that make success in typical public schools more difficult, to home lives filled with substance-addicted parents, and abuse. Some have been the victim of bullying in traditional schools, or less-than-supportive parents. In all cases, the girls who choose to attend PACE have determined that their life circumstances do not define them. They have chosen to take control over the aspects of life they can, and are committed to building a wonderful life for themselves. They are inspiring, and they need our help to continue.

Healing the Heart Breakfast – February 8th

This year, on February 8th, 9am at St. George Greek Orthodox Church, 9246 Little Road, New Port Richey, PACE Center for Girls – Pasco will be hosting their annual Healing the Heart Breakfast. Every year nearly 300 members of the community come together to hear from several PACE girls who share their story of challenge, and victory. There is never a dry eye in the audience. I will have a table at the event, please reach out to me to join me – you won’t forget the experience. 

If you have been as lucky as I have and want to give back, please join me. Everyone has struggled with something, everyone has a story. Consider sharing yours with girls who desperately need your guidance and faith. Faith that even in the most difficult events can be overcome. If you have a business or are a member of a professional group, consider how you can support your local center. There are so many ways to get involved, and all help is appreciated. 

PACE Center for Girls

Here’s a brief statement from the Executive Director, Gail Armstrong:

At PACE Pasco, our passion is derived from our students. We currently serve 57 girls from across Pasco County.

The PACE Center for Girls, Pasco is located in New Port Richey, Florida. PACE was initially founded in 1985 and came to Pasco County in 1998. PACE serves local girls in the areas of academic improvement, social services, and transition support. The target population for our center is at-risk girls between ages 11 to 17 who may benefit from a more personalized and supportive educational environment. At PACE, girls work to become productive citizens, who value their education, repair family relationships, celebrate their achievements and build self-confidence.

The PACE model focuses on long-term progress in academics and provides a stable environment for emotional growth. PACE Pasco recognizes a holistic and gender-responsive environment that allows for girls to thrive mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

Investing in our girls is a wonderful opportunity to help girls find their voices, achieve their potential and celebrate lives defined by responsibility, dignity, serenity, and grace.

 

Amanda Colon
Amanda is a Wife, Mother and Step-Mother of three girls (and a Doberman), Board Certified Marital and Family Law Attorney, Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediator, Parenting Coordinator, and Business Owner. When not running to court, the office, lacrosse, ballet or tutoring, sometimes she can also be found at Publix or Target. Amanda passionately supports the PACE Center for Girls, Inc. and has been proud to serve PACE Center for Girls - Pasco as a Board member and past Chair for the last five years.