Pacita Abad and her artwork were actively involved with all of the diverse global communities where the artist worked. She willingly devoted a considerable amount of time to constantly giving courses, workshops and lectures about art to numerous groups of people, including children, adults and the aged.
Pacita believed that everyone, whether young or old, should be able to enjoy and make art and she did her best to make that possible everywhere she went. Professionally, she actively engaged with artists and art organizations around the world, joining in group projects and was sought after to participate on art panels and symposia held by museums, regional art groups and universities.
Not surprisingly, Pacita received numerous awards during her artistic career. Probably her most memorable award was her first, when she received the "1984 TOYM Award for Art" in the Philippines in 1985. TOYM stands for Ten Outstanding Young Men and in the Award's first 25 years it had always been given to men. Pacita was thrilled by the fact that she had broken the sex barrier and said in her acceptance speech that it was long overdue that Filipina women were recognized, as the Philippines was full of outstanding women and referred proudly to her mother. She also proclaimed that Filipino men better watch out because in the future there would be many more women receiving this award and that the name might have to be changed to the TOYW Award.