Pace Center for Girls to Expand Services in Central Georgia

December 07, 2020
News Thumb Macon Grant

MACON, Ga.-- The Pace Center for Girls is expanding their services for central Georgia girls that are at risk.

The service is a statewide Florida nonprofit and it works to help set girls up on the pathway for success,

This expansion was made possible by a $425,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

Macon Judicial Circuit District Attorney David Cooke says he is thrilled the grant will help increase the presence of the program in middle Georgia.

“For the last several years, I’ve sought to increase our partnership with PACE to grow strong kids and intervene in the lives of young girls, especially those at risk of becoming victims, defendants or both. That’s why I committed $150,000 in forfeiture funds in 2016 to help bring PACE to Macon and have been a strong advocate of their expansion into Georgia. I’m thrilled that this grant will not only ensure that PACE is a part of Middle Georgia, but that their presence continues to grow and help the most vulnerable among us.”

Cooke shares that the program helps girls not become defendants or victims later on.

He says the program looks at girls that have risk factors such as living in areas of high poverty, parents that are in jail or on drugs, or those involved in DFCS.

"These are great girls but they are in circumstances that put them at risk for becoming another statistic," stated Cooke.

According to a press release, the grant will fund the Pace Reach Program, providing social, emotional, behavioral, and mental health counseling resources specifically designed to support girls in middle and high school at higher risk for school failure or involvement in the juvenile justice system.

“We are excited to grow Pace services across middle Georgia for girls in our community who are struggling to find their identity as they grow into young women,” said Cheferre Young, assistant district attorney, Macon judicial circuit. “Even amidst a pandemic, Pace’s efforts to offer innovative services is phenomenal. When I think about the future of Juvenile Justice in middle Georgia, I recognize Pace as one of the leading organizations that will help pave the way for more initiatives that offer hope and opportunity to our residents.”