Shares her vision on Girls of Destiny:
empowering teenage girls to shine like STARS
It was a hot and humid day, the day of my sit down interview with Pat Chacha. The Sunlight was shinning sending pulsating electromagnetic radiation across the magnanimous beautiful blue skies, non-selfish of sharing it’s alluring field of infrared and visible ultraviolet light for all to soak up. I walked towards the chateau of where Pat Chacha resides, I quickly canvassed the neighbourhood noticing the different varieties of modern classicism houses and how quiet the street was or was the Sun to blame for spreading too much radiant heat making everyone drunk with exhaustion that our protective human body energy became weak they decided to stay indoors today to sober-up.
Crossing over the black driveway onto a grayish white flat-stone pathway leading to a white Victorian style door and rang the door bell. A small, petite woman with short curly black hair, wearing a leopard print blouse and dark blue denim opens the door. “Hi, how are you?” the woman says in an unmistakable monotone voice, I knew then it was Pat Chacha. She invites me to enter through the front door of her humble abode and a big hug immediately follows (I must confess that I was not expecting it); but I felt her electrifying warmth, somehow I sensed it was genuine. Pat Chacha ushers me to sit down on a contemporary sandy brown sofa with glant fabric, eyeing the extravagant beige curtains that dresses the large windows and fine African art work that brightens the living room walls. A quiet and calm space, one can easily sit back, put their feet up, get comfortable and easily fall asleep. But for me, as much as it was tempting, I dare not besides Pat’s bright and big personality kept me very intrigued, rather impatient to know more about her; a power-house of a woman.
Pat Chacha is the Founder and Director of Girls of Destiny (GOD), a community based camp that was launched in July 2003. With a mission to ignite the brilliance within young people; training them to become successful leaders prepared to develop the next generation of leaders. Along the way assisting community churches, organizations and businesses to create helpful programs that will bring a constructive outlook in the lives of young people.
Girls of Destiny (GOD) offers mentorship, counselling and personal development programs for teen girls 11-16 years old to sanction and instill confidence in them with a mandate to become strong young women while following Christ’s example to unselfishly serve, encourage and mentor their counterparts as well as others.
Before giving birth to Girls of Destiny (GOD), Pat Chacha, an ordained Minister and a certified Pastoral Counselor for more than fifteen years. Pat has counselled many youths at her home church and community churches. She is a motivational speaker who believes without a doubt that young people are valuable beings needing love, understanding and support to bring out their God given gifts and talents. She has advocated for youths through many educational, youth and children projects in the community for over fifteen years, giving her great insight to counsel and mentor the young ladies of Girls of Destiny (GOD).
For the past twelve years, Pat has been a Medical Laboratory Science Professor teaching in the Ontario College system. She is the coordinator of the Medical Laboratory Science Program at Centennial College where she continues to work and teach today.
When Pat was asked about how she came up with the idea to start a program for teen girls, sitting back, very poised; shoulder blades equally leveled with one leg crossing over the other while resting her arms on each side of the sandy brown padded chair arms she says, “It was back in 2000 and one day the vision to start a program for girls instantaneously came to me. It was a vision that came from God and I obeyed.” Noting the obvious acronym for Girls of Destiny (GOD) this was wittingly given to show a sign of reverence to God. Pat further divulges, “Girls of Destiny (GOD) signifies to plant a seed of self-worth awakening the minds of young girls; helping them recognize and bring out their gifting to steer them onto the right path to fulfill their God given destiny.”
Pat spoke with love and compassion about young people. She holds a unique connection with them and she understands that in order for a young person to excel in all aspects of life it takes someone willing to not give up on them. She says, “The pressure and challenges in these times can be tremulous for young people. My job is to deposit the love of Christ that He gave to me, to all of us into their spirit. To let them know that they are priceless and they can do anything they set their minds to do. Teens today go through a lot in this every changing world and they sometimes fear they are a lone.” Hence, their catchy but mighty motto: Shine like STARS in the universe and the unambiguous need for the GOD’s impactful summer camp workshops.
During the summer months the camp offers different workshops, such as nutrition/fitness; the campers learn how to eat healthy meals and maintain a balanced diet which includes physical activities. Etiquette; they are taught the essentials of proper table manners and dining decorum. Modeling; professional models are invited to share their insight on modeling and the modeling industry. Outer beauty (make-up and skin care for teens); campers learn age appropriate make-up tips from a professional make-up artist. Dress like a Princess (body image and fashion); the girls learn how to identify their body type and shape with teachings on suitable dressing, just to name a few.
Stars of the universe, a youth leadership workshops is also offered at GOD workshops. A value based interactive and practical program intended to equip youth stemming from 10 – 18 years old. Teens are taught the necessary skills to become productive and successful oriented adults. The workshops for junior teens (10-12 yrs old) focus on skills that will help prepare them to handle the pressures at a time of fast developmental change. They begin to develop the skills needed to make positive decisions and form lasting relationships. Ages 13-15 years of age learn what it is like to have healthy communication, social and life skills becoming more aware of their positive strengths and abilities all working together to promote self-esteem. During the workshops for 16-18 year olds they are educated on how to better understand the rapid changes and demands within an every changing society, emphasizing the difficulties teens are often faced with in their daily lives.
Another division of GOD is Destiny Light Educational Services. Pat created this service back in 2005, an academic and scholarship coaching consulting business which prepares students with the guidance of their parents to win funds for post secondary education. Pat mentors students on the “art of winning scholarships.” Destiny Light Educational Services has helped many graduating high school students in Canada win up to $40,000 in scholarships.
Nine years of operating Girls of Destiny (GOD) have come and gone and GOD has helped over 500 teenage girls re-build their self-esteem by spewing a strong sense of self-worth and preparing great leaders who will one day raise-up the next generation of successful leaders. Pat says, “The programs have helped many teens over come peer-pressure, stay in school and some have enrolled in a College and/or University and have completed their undergraduate studies.”
What lies ahead for GOD in the future? Well, Pat hopes to register GOD as a non-profit organization and get the necessary funding to own a GOD program building where she can hold the workshops all year round.
~written by Simone Da Costa
This article was first published on the Christian Jones