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Angela Patton

Tragedies are always difficult to overcome, but for Angela Patton they can be used as inspiration to pursue endeavors that positively impact the community. When Diva Mistadi Smith-Roane, the 5-year-old daughter of Patton’s friend, lost her life through the careless use of a firearm accident in 2004, Patton saw an opportunity to develop a program whose mission was to provide a summer camp where girls, ages 11 to 17, could be safe and instill in them principles that would adequately prepare them for a healthy womanhood. She named it Camp Diva in memory of Diva. Since its inception, Camp Diva has expanded to offer after-school programs, conferences, and additional programs and services. The aim is to empower at-risk girls of African descent, whom she refers to as “at-promise.” In 2011 Angela became part of the Girls for a Change staff and is currently running GFC Richmond programs. Trained as a licensed practical nurse and doula, Patton has worked in the nonprofit sector for over fifteen years. Angela serves as the director of Camp Diva, completing her BS degree in Business Administration from ECPI University and certification in Nonprofit Management. She has been honored as one of Virginians Making a Difference and Top 40 under 40, and was selected as one of seventy-five 2012 Opportunity Collaboration Cordes Fellows.

9 Responses to Angela Patton

  1. Miriam Lorenzo says:

    I teach a class on female crime and delinquency and would love to get my students involved with your project. Can we connect and explore the possibility to replicate this program here in south Florida? I am a strong advocate of service learning for my students. Great job! I was totally touched by your presentation. Sincerely, Miriam Lorenzo

  2. Resse says:

    This is amazing! My father has always been an important part of my life, he was my world and I was his. When i was only 5 he was sentenced to 17 years in prison and that crushed me. I have always wanted to help others in this situation and I think its awesome what you have done, and are doing! I am 19 years old now and I now see my father every day GOD was on our side and brought us back together! I live in Virginia so if there is anything I can do it would mean so much to me to be apart of this and give a little girl back some happiness!

  3. Angela,
    I just watched your talk and I want to thank you so much for what you’re doing. I have 2 wonderful daughters who mean the world to me, and thinking of the girls whose fathers are in prison reminded me how much of a blessing we are in each others’ lives. You did a great, great service to those little girls and to their fathers. Please continue your work with pride, because that kind of work is priceless.

    -Peter Christensen

  4. TerryLynn says:

    My beautiful 6 year old granddaughter would love to be closer to her daddy but he rejects her. So many nights Jayla cries because she misses him and sometimes he will talk to her on the phone and make arrangements to see her only to back out at the last minute. Anyway, I was wondering if you have any suggestions for helping this precious little girl overcome rejections from her father. By the way, he has seven other children ranging in age from 2-35 years old, each one by different women.

    • Please note, I do not claim to be a professional therapist, just an advocate for girl empowerment. I have heard many stories similar to your story, and I feel it is a daddy issue; and she is developing a father wound. Her mother has to continue to share with her daughter that she is beautiful, fearless and courageous, surround her with positive father figures, and constantly ensure her that it is not her father’s fault (He probably had daddy issues too, and sounds like he is looking for love as well). Mom must not speak negative about him or other men in her daughter presence; she must allow her daughter to develop her own perception of men. Her mother should support and make sure that male role-models around her daughter supports her making decision on mates that will see her as she sees herself; beautiful, fearless, and courageous. Platforms must be created to change attitudes, ideas, and perceptions to break the damaging cycles; seek outlets, such as programs, for her to express herself, healing tools, and resources to support her in this journey. I hope this helps.
      –Angela W. Patton, Founder/Executive Camp Diva

  5. Andrea E. Olivier says:

    What an amazing story! A truly revolutionary way to treat prison inmates as human beings. Life doesn’t end with incarceration, and neither should looking forward to the happy moments that make life worth living, like being a father. Hooray for girl power moving this dream forward and making it a reality!

  6. CAROLYN PRENTIS says:

    I DON’T HAVE A QUESTION, I KNOW OF THE GREAT WORK THAT YOU ARE DOING. IF THERE IS ANY THING THAT I CAN DO TO HELP FELL FREE TO GIVE ME A CALL (516-0897) ANY TIME YOUR PRESENTATION WAS MARVELOUS AND HEART FELT. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK YOU ARE SIMPLY MARVELOUS AND A BLESSING TO ALL THAT YOU TOUCH.