Submitted by GFAC
Girls For A Change (GFAC) invites the community to join them on November 4, 2022 at their headquarters in Chesterfield, Virginia for the unveiling of their $1M renovation project.
Attendees will get a chance to meet the construction team, get a sneak peek at the design concepts for the remodeled center, meet GFAC staff and board members, and get a look at programs and plans for 2023.
December will be the one year anniversary of the launch of the One Million Reasons to Build, a $1M fundraising campaign to purchase and renovate their space. This spring, GFAC CEO Angela Patton successfully purchased the building, however there is a lot more to be raised to turn the building into a space that truly reflects the organization and its needs.
Patton has been making big moves as the campaign continues to move forward. Partnered with two Richmond Black owned companies (KEI Architects and Emerge Construction Group) and joined forces with Jen Fell, owner of Studio505 as the strategic partner for the building campaign. Emerge CEO Michael Hopkins is a longtime supporter of Girls For A Change and will be doing the work at cost while also helping with fundraising.
“As a father raising two daughters, I understand, now more than ever, the importance of Girls For A Change’s purpose and mission. The complexity of the various dynamics girls of color face today is unparalleled. Often, the existing socio-emotional resources provided to Black girls and other girls of color lack cultural intelligence, and the financial support that organizations like Girls For A Change need to sustain is limited. As a result, the Emerge Construction team felt compelled to provide our industry expertise and resources at no cost. We will serve as the construction manager on GFAC’s facility expansion, working collaboratively with GFAC through this process. I encourage other like-minded individuals and businesses to support Girls For A Change to protect and prepare the next generation of transformative women,” says Hopkins.
The new building will allow for significant programmatic expansion and will unapologetically reflect Black girl identity. State-of-the-art facilities will enhance a broad range of our programmatic offerings, from health and wellness to bridging the digital divide.
“As a small African American owned business in the Richmond community, it has always been a principal mission that we serve our community. We strongly support organizations that advocate for our children. Girls for A Change is a particularly worthy organization, targeting their services to girls of color who are particularly vulnerable and in need of mentoring and tutoring. We pledge to open our doors and introduce them to the opportunities available in the design and construction industry. We have a long history of mentoring young aspiring designers, but an even richer history of contributing time and effort to organizations that give our community hope and direction. We applaud Girls for A Change for its mission and its work to strengthen the pipeline to success for our future community leaders,” says Monica Flippen, Vice President of KEI Architects.
The organization has also been working with Black girls in their programs to co-create a space that best reflects them, offering participants some ownership over the building’s overall feel as their home away from home. Project designer and longtime GFAC supporter, Jen Fell, worked with girls over the summer collecting feedback and brainstorming to identify needs, as well as possible solutions to meet those needs. Participants in turn learned more about interior design, and architectural concepts.
“It is time for this space to tell the story of Girls For A Change. It is time for the space to reflect, honor and celebrate the lives of Black girls,” says Jen Fell, owner of Studio505.