The following journal entries detail the history of Girls PACT. A lot of cool “stuff” has happened since 2010…
Journal Entry 2010
It’s January 2010 and America’s Promise and AT&T launched “My Ideas Grant” to inspire young people to take action against the drop-out crises. I am so excited to capitalize on this opportunity to pursue my passion for helping young women navigate life! And, I am glad I invited several high school girls to join me in selecting a name, developing program topics and designing logistics! It’s so helpful to hear their perspective. I cannot believe that no one talks about healthy relationships, sexual health, pregnancy and mental health with these girls! I am so glad we were awarded $10,000 to facilitate Girls PACT during the 2010-2011 school year so I can make a difference in our community.
Journal Entry 2011
Wow, it’s May already and Girls PACT was a huge success! Just over 30 girls participated in the 2010-2011 program at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Venice. The 10-week sessions were a great way to organize the curriculum and incorporate meaningful service projects. I am particularly proud of the girls for making the time to sew diaper bags! And, it was quite shocking to learn how much it costs to purchase diapers, bottles, wipes, bibs and toys when we shopped at Target to fill the bags. I am a little disturbed that all 12 of the customized bags were sent to an expecting teen or one that recently delivered. Hopefully, Girls PACT will continue to operate at the grassroots level and tackle this pregnancy stuff.
Journal Entry 2012
Girls PACT is doing something right! This school year almost 50 girls participated in the program. Our movie night was pretty rad! It is cool to see the girls step into leadership roles and organize events. What’s even cooler is that word is getting out about Girls PACT! Summit View School in Culver City requested a 6-week onsite program. I was honored to bring my expertise to the teachers and the girls. Again, it is obvious that adults have a hard time talking about “stuff” with our young people!
Journal Entry 2013
This was a big year for Girls PACT! We facilitated groups on the campuses of Culver City High School, Orville Wright Middle School, Venice High School and both the Boys & Girls Clubs of Venice and Oakwood Recreation Center. In one school year, I was able to build relationships with over 80 girls! I like being on campus, too, because it changes the structure of the original 10-week program. Now, each group is recognized for its own “stuff” and we have the whole year to explore topics that meet the needs of the group!
Plus, thanks to the YWCA Santa Monica/Westside, we are able to accept 100% tax-deductible donations to support the program! In July, the YWCA Santa Monica/Westside agreed to be our fiscal agent, which means Girls PACT can operate as a nonprofit, but without the stress of tax obligations. It is such a perfect partnership! In fact, I have been invited to facilitate Girls PACT at their transitional housing unit. These former foster youth are amazing! It’s so much fun conversing and sharing with 18-24 year olds!
Journal Entry 2014
It is so crazy to think that what started in 1 location with no more than 30 girls has evolved into a truly unique organization that has served almost 200 young women – all of which have remained without child! This school year, Animo Venice High School was added to our list of locations.
I cannot really call it a program anymore because it has certainly grown into much more than that. Our quarterly events have attracted new girls, current girls and even girls from our earlier days. This “program” has become a caring, loving, supportive family that unites to tackle “stuff” to combat unplanned pregnancy. I am so excited to see what 2015 brings us!
Journal Entry 2015
Wow, we facilitated a total of 103 workshops and events, engaged with 139 girls (99 of them were new to Girls PACT this year!) and celebrated 18 graduating seniors! Our new partnerships include the Pico Youth & Family Center, PATH Gramercy and Venice YouthBuild. We even hosted an event on the east coast! Girls PACT is constantly growing and evolving. It is so much fun to see where this adventure takes us!
If you wish to support the growth of our organization, make your tax-deductible donation today!