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Palm City businesswomen partner with young girls to raise awareness on International Women's Day

Nonprofit uses skilled trades to help at-risk teens with mental health
Posted at 9:42 PM, Mar 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-08 23:43:19-05

PALM CITY, Fla. — Women and girls at Project Lift in Palm City are working hard to raise awareness of Women in Construction Week.

"The women that decided to help us out are just women that believe in us," said Autumn Thomas, girls program coordinator at Project Lift.

The nonprofit uses skilled trades to help at-risk teens with mental health during tough times.

This week, girls are building large Adirondack chairs.

"The idea behind them is just showing that these girls can do anything," said Tami Karol, owner of Tami Karol Insurance.

Each of the four chairs will be represented by local businesswomen who each have some sort of construction background.

The chairs will be auctioned off at a clam bake benefit at Project Lift on April 3.

All proceeds will go toward the girls' program.

"A lot of people don't know that we actually have a girl's program as well, because a lot of the things that you see back here are stereotypical for men," said Thomas.

Some of the trades at Project Lift include welding, carpentry and auto-mechanics.

"They build these all," said Karol. "They cut the wood. They sand them. They weld. They're in every part of this. They're doing everything here."

"Women in construction means people in construction," said Casey Clark, a former Project Lift graduate. "It's not any different. It shouldn't be, at least."

Clark now works at Project Lift as the welding instructor with other girls now in the program.

She said it's a way for her to give back.

"Once you see your product finished you can actually look at it and be like, 'Wow, I did that.' So, it's really an empowering feeling," said Clark. "Women are just as capable as anyone else."