FSU Credit Union is committed to supporting PACE Center for Girls Leon and rasied $2,850 in January to help further their mission of improving the lives of local girls and young women.

PACE Leon provides these girls with an opportunity for a better future through education, counseling, training, and advocacy.

“PACE values all girls and young women, believing each on deserves an opportunity to find her voice, achieve her potential and celebrate a life defined by responsibility, dignity, serenity, and grace,” said Kelly Otte, PACE Executive Director.

As part of the effort, FSU Credit Union’s Borrow 4 Less – Give Back More Program is focusing on youth in 2018. We donate $10 for every consumer loan that our members obtain, so our members also play a role in raising these funds by financing or refinancing a vehicle at a great rate. It’s a team effort that directly helps improve local lives throughout the year.

“FSU Credit Union is committed to making a difference in our community,” said Bradley Blake, FSUCU President/CEO. “Champions 4 Change is a belief that we have the power to be champions for important causes and act like champions in support of what is most important to us. Last year, we donated more than $47,000 to our community by supporting local organizations that also give back to the communities where we live and work. Through direct contributions, our Borrow 4 Less – Give Back More program and the many ways we support the FSU Community, we are making a difference. Our members are making a difference.”

PACE stands for “Practical, Academic, and Cultural Education.” They are the only nonresidential gender-specific, not-for-profit prevention program in Leon County that provides education and wrap-around social services to at-risk girls. The PACE model provides gender specific and trauma-informed services, combined with counseling, small class sizes and individualized academic plans.

The overriding thing the girls have in common is the amount of pain and trauma they have endured in their young lives. Among the 70 girls currently attending school there:

  • 29% have been abused at home
  • 69% have serious health issues
  • 20% have attempted suicide
  • 27% have run away from home
  • 83% live below the poverty line
  • 77% have failed one or more classes prior to coming to PACE
  • 52% have been homeless in the past 5 years

Due to these risk factors, the girls are at risk for dropping out of school, early pregnancy, drug and alcohol abuse, and getting involved with the juvenile justice system. The impact their program has on the lives of the girls is almost magical.

As a result of PACE Leon’s mission, efforts and focus:

  • 96% of the girls have no involvement with the juvenile justice system after leaving our program
  • 87% of the girls improve academically
  • 90% of the girls are in school (middle, high or college) or employed after leaving here.

For more information about PACE Leon or how to get involved, visit www.pacecenter.org/locations/leon.

Girls doing homework at PACE Center for Girls

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