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PACE Center for Girls of Marion County is located in Ocala, Florida and was founded in 2001. Since opening, PACE Marion has served over 600 girls. The center is located in Madison Commons at 328 NE 1st Ave. 

PACE Marion is one of 19 centers across Florida.  For more information on our statewide organization, click here.  For more information about PACE Marion click here .

To contact us call (352) 369-0571 or click here for more contact information. Girls or others interested in attending or making a referral to PACE Marion please contact the Center and fill out the following referral form.


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By Kathy Mancil
Ocala Star Banner
Published: Sunday, March 10, 2013 at 6:30 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, March 7, 2013 at 11:09 a.m.

It was a record year for PACE Center for Girls of Marion County's annual Voices of PACE luncheon.


Held on Feb. 26 at Hilton Ocala, the luncheon was attended by about 300 people and raised more than $11,500, with more donations still coming in, said Carole Savage, the nonprofit organization's executive director.

"With additional pledges, we are at approximately $25,000," Savage said.

Typically, she said, the luncheon has had about 200 attendees and has raised between $2,000 to $9,000 per event. This year, the goal was to raise $10,000.

An acronym for Practical Academic and Cultural Education, PACE is a nonprofit organization helping girls, ages 12 to 18, who have been identified as at-risk. Some of the girls have been abused emotionally or sexually; some have run away from home; some have committed crimes. No matter the cause or individual situation, each girl is behind academically and needs extra help and guidance or counseling. PACE provides those services in a safe, non-residential setting.

The annual luncheon heightens awareness and raises funds for PACE, but it also gives PACE girls themselves the opportunity to speak to the community. Thus, the title: Voices of PACE.


Published: Saturday, June 2, 2012 at 5:15 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, June 2, 2012 at 5:15 p.m.

It never fails. Every school day, one of Alice Cannon's friends will teasingly ask her, "Hey, didn't you just wear that same dress yesterday?"

"Yes," she has to answer with a smile, because it's true. Alice, 17, a junior at Forest High School, does in fact wear the same dress to school every day.

Sure, she changes it up with different shoes, belts, stockings and other accessories, but during every one of the nearly 180 days so far of the 2011-12 school year, Alice has worn the same black dress.

In doing so, she has raised awareness about Marion County's PACE Center for Girls, raised more than $5,000 for the cause, and has been an inspiration to others who know about her Uniform Project.

After reading about the original Uniform Project, launched in 2009 by a New York woman who wore a black dress for a year to raise funds for underprivileged children in India, Alice decided to host Uniform Project Ocala.

Because she and her mother, Beth Cannon, had previously worked as special events volunteers for PACE, Alice said she knew the center "makes a positive difference in the girls' lives."

PACE, an acronym for Practical Academic Cultural Education, is a nonprofit organization that helps girls ages 12 to 18 who are "at risk."



Ocala, FL (September 1, 2011) – The original Uniform Project began with one woman in New York in 2009 as a fundraiser for children in India. Her creative endeavor inspired similar uniform projects around the world. This one, Uniform Project Ocala, has the goal of raising awareness and funds for PACE Center for Girls of Marion County. In order to do so, Alice Cannon, a junior at Forest High School and special events volunteer with PACE has committed to wearing the same dress, her “uniform,” every school day during the 2011-2012 school year.




Ocala, FL (August 1, 2011) - PACE Center for Girls of Marion County will celebrate the accomplishments of at least 15 girls at their August Transition Ceremony on Wednesday, August 17 at the Marion County Public Library Headquarters located at 2720 East Silver Springs Blvd. The ceremony begins at 3:30 pm with a garden party reception beforehand at 3:00 pm.

The volunteer development committee is currently planning the garden party reception to honor the girls with their families and friends. The committee will turn the reception room into a peaceful garden atmosphere for the celebration. Community attendance shows support for the girls and their families and is always encouraged and appreciated.  Attendees are encouraged to wear something white for the garden themed atmosphere.

The Transition Ceremony highlights the positive relationships each girl cultivates with her instructors and the character traits they have developed that raise their self-esteem and encourage their success in the future. It honors the successful completion of the PACE program and the return of students to their base school or other educational setting.

PACE Marion's 10th Anniversary Community Challenge Grantors are contributing $10,000 with one challenge - that PACE match the donations within 6 weeks for a grand total of $20,000. The Community Challenge Grant Campaign began on June 8, 2011, during the Believing in Girls Society reception prior to the graduation ceremony.

The graduation ceremony took place on Wednesday, June 8th at 5:30 pm at the Ocala/Marion County Association of Realtors Building located at 3105 NE 14 St in Ocala. Representative Dennis Baxley  was the ceremony's keynote speaker and was awarded Marion Legislator of the Year by Adrianna Sekula, Associate Director of Government Affairs for PACE Center for Girls, Inc. and Cathleen Blagay, Executive Director of PACE Center for Girls of Marion County.