Healing girls through the arts

The Pace Center for Girls, Leon partnered with the Zonta Club of Tallahassee, Florida for its Healing with the Arts (HEART) program, which provides arts education to 120 Pace students annually. Most girls at Pace failed out of a traditional school setting and 70% have a history of trauma. Studies show art and culture can aid in the trauma healing process.

HEART increases opportunities for girls to engage in hands-on arts activities, which improves the overall quality of their educational experience and provides healing for girls who have experienced trauma. Since receiving a US$5,000 grant from Zonta International, Pace Center for Girls has offered painting, music, arts and crafts, dance, photography, singing, poetry and spoken word activities.

The girls also attended field trips to culturally enriching arts-related destinations, such as the Tallahassee Ballet’s Nutcracker performance. In addition, they held an art contest in which girls displayed their own paintings for their peers and board members to view and vote on the top three most creative artwork.

Pace is Florida’s only statewide gender-responsive juvenile justice prevention and early intervention organization focused on young women ages 11-18. It is recognized for its expertise in comprehensive therapeutic services and high-quality educational opportunities for girls in 6th-12th grades.

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