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WE'RE OPEN: Pinellas County non-profit eliminates fees to help girls succeed

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Posted at 5:31 AM, Apr 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-22 05:36:05-04

A Pinellas County non-profit is retooling how they do things to continue helping kids during COVID-19.

Girls, Inc. of Pinellas is still taking care of 25 school-aged girls from K-12, helping parents who may still be working or struggling with on-line schooling.

Girls Inc. say they're following all proper guidelines from the CDC and the Department of Health.

Typically, Girls Inc. aftercare is full of hundreds of students.

But now, each classroom only has about nine students. That classroom must be self-contained, and students are spread out.

Not an easy task for a group of girls, either.

"Girls have a tendency to have a very relational learning function, so our girls are having to stay apart from one another," says Executive Director Darla Otey.

The students also get a temperature check every morning, and parents are required to fill out a survey in regards to COVID-19 symptoms.

Even still, Girls Inc. wanted to take things a step further.

"We decided to waive all of our fees because many of our families have one or two parents who have lost their jobs but still need the support," says Otey.

All thanks to generous donors who are stepping in to help. Including the United Way Suncoast, who donated $2,000 in emergency funding on Tuesday.

With schools closed the remainder of the school year, it'll be a big help to parents.

"We've decided as a team that we're in this for the long haul," explains Otey.

Girls, Inc. encourages girls to be strong, smart and bold with a curriculum on STEAM.

Right now, there is a wait list for Girls, Inc. Pinellas, but they hope to open more classes soon.

Click here for more details and to get in touch with them.