The $2M grant from THE PLAYERS Championship Village will fund a three-year pilot program in Northeast Florida

JACKSONVILLE, FLA, Oct. 12, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- THE PLAYERS Championship Village, Inc., (The Village) has awarded Pace Center for Girls (Pace) a $2M grant to fund a three-year, pilot program in North Florida to provide girls and their families gender-responsive, substance abuse prevention and intervention services. 

Services will be provided through Pace’s Reach therapy model and ensure girls and their families have access to substance abuse prevention and early intervention, case management and therapy, and other needed supports. The model is community-based to ensure there are no barriers to access.

As a pilot, positive outcomes stemming from this partnership will enable Pace to replicate the approach across the state of Florida and throughout the Southeast, further expanding the impact of the grant. 

“Pace’s unique model is backed by over three decades of experience in delivering evidence-based programming and demonstrating successful results and outcomes for the girls they serve,” said Jim Marlier, Director of PLAYERS Championship Village. “Our partnership with Pace upholds The Village’s history of combating substance abuse among young people in North Florida – and helping girls build a brighter future.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has had severe negative effects on the mental health of girls and young women and brought to light disparities in access to substance abuse prevention and intervention services,” said Mary Marx, President and CEO of Pace Center for Girls. “Through this pilot, we will be able to expand our services, with a specific focus on substance abuse prevention and intervention. We are grateful to THE PLAYERS Championship Village for their support.”

Announced during National Substance Abuse Prevention Month and on the International Day of the Girl, the collaboration officially launched at Pace's Jacksonville location, where a mural and interactive art installation by acclaimed artist Nicole (Nico) Holderbaum was unveiled. A second mural will be unveiled at Pace’s Clay County location at a later date.

“Creating a mural with Nico and the other girls was an empowering experience for me. Sharing my story through art expression allowed for new healing,” said Jay, 15, one of the girls who collaborated with Holderbaum on the mural. “It is exciting to know that our work and my experiences will help uplift other girls going through difficult times.”

“Each young artist had an opportunity to add their own art piece to the mural, validating their unique experiences and expressions,” said Nicole (Nico) Holderbaum. “By encouraging these young artists to express themselves creatively, this experience has given them a powerful tool to process their feelings, emotions and experiences.” 

The partnership with Pace continues the work and advances the mission and purpose of The Village, which is a not-for-profit organization that was formed in 1987 to provide drug and alcohol treatment recovery for youth aged 13 to 17 who could not afford treatment through for-profit facilities.


Empowerment In Action Pace Girls Lead Art Response to Combat Substance Abuse

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