Our Team

We couldn't help so many families in so many ways without the support of our Giving Words Team Members. Learn a little more about the people who make it happen.

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Eddie Brown

Founder

With an entrepreneur’s vision and a servant’s heart, Eddie Brown and his wife Ginny started the non-profit Giving Words to help struggling single mothers address the ongoing trials of family management. Here's his story: ⠀

"With 23 years in all aspects of the housing industry and 9 years of owning my own business, I have uniquely developed my skills to design, organize, and market our ministry. I have created a network of over 60 partners in the central Virginia area to assist moms in various areas of needs such as car repair and gifting, home maintenance, counseling, budgeting, and appliance repair. Additionally, I have, with the assistance of Apricot software, designed a tailored system that can track all mothers, services, activities and volunteers. This program lays the foundation for our non-profit’s ability to be replicated in every county, state, or even in another country. ⠀

Business acumen alone, however, lacks the empathy to take on such a burden. Even with over 32% single-parent households in Virginia’s and 35% in the United States, each time a mother needs help, she first must feel valued and accepted. Reared by compassionate parents and mentored by selfless neighbors like a local foster mother who cared for drug-addicted babies, I realized before adulthood that I should actively care for the most vulnerable. Later in my adulthood after a divorce and losing custody of my children temporarily, this calling magnified. Later, I became a stepfather, then the primary caregiver of my elderly aunt, and four years ago, the custodial guardian of my infant granddaughter. Each of these experiences, along with my wife Ginny’s 25 years in education and my business training, prepared both my wife and me to identify and empathize with the overwhelming load of single parenting and to offer support and solutions to common problems that can derail the family. ⠀

The vision for Giving Words started with a passion for poverty-stricken children and parents in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, but as our lives became even more grounded in Central Virginia, our hearts for those vulnerable families only expanded."

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Ginny Brown

Founder

As the eldest child of a loving single mother, Ginny Brown grew up with an early understanding of the overwhelming task of parenting alone. Throughout her youth, she longed only to give her future children a happy family with two committed parents.

Eight years after graduating from James Madison University with a degree in English education, two children, and a marriage to their father, her dream shattered when her husband left. Ginny found herself in the same position, a single mom.

Thankfully, most moments were filled with joy. With a loving, supportive family and church, a devoted group of friends, and a secure, encouraging work environment, the perpetual task of parenting was manageable and mostly enjoyable. Still, as the years passed, Ginny still longed for something more.

Ten years after her separation and divorce, Ginny met and later married Eddie, and their passions for moms and their children grew together from their childhood experiences and love for two generations of children, their own and their friends’, and now their grandchildren (born and claimed).

Ginny’s position as a high school teacher at Louisa County High School for the past twenty years has kept her connected to single parents, their children, and their constant struggles.

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Allison Coleman

Resource / Care Team Coordinator

"Sometimes you are just exhausted, totally depleted, having given all of your strength, and then one more thing goes wrong. A child gets sick and you have to take off from work, a pipe bursts and floods your basement, you get a flat tire, a tree falls and blocks your driveway. All of these things can happen to any of us. When they happen to a single mom, working through the challenge is even tougher. Already exhausted, one more thing feels like all you can take. The good news is, Giving Words wants to help.
Giving Words is an organization that understands the real struggle of parenting, especially when you are doing it alone. They want to extend a helping hand for instances like the fallen tree, but also truly desire to build relationships with and help what they call “their moms,” to make sure they know they aren’t alone. They want “their moms” to know that they are loved, capable, and worthy!
What I admire most about Giving Words is that there is truly no judgement. They see each mom, each family, as important and aim to care for them in a way that allows them to feel valued. Such an amazing organization that models how we should treat all of our neighbors!
Ashlyn Jones

Ashlyn Jones

Intake Coordinator

Ashlyn is a freelance virtual assistant and designer who has an affinity for inspiring others.

Ashlyn takes a great interest in studying psychology, mindfulness, self-help, and astronomy. Outside of her interest in these topics, she spends her free time traveling, hiking, and reading.

She has a passion for helping others heal and grow into their best selves. Her ultimate goal is to become a full time life coach.

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Rikki Messere

Follow Up Coordinator

Rikki Messere joined our team early this year, shortly after her husband Steven got involved with car repair through his place of employment, C-ville Classic Cars.
She grew up in Louisa County and graduated with a cosmetology license. After getting married and working in the hair industry for five years, she decided to become a stay-at-home mom. She and her husband realized that childcare would have consumed her salary, so living on one income just made more sense despite the struggles. When the children are older, she hopes to go back to school to become a social worker.
Additionally, Rikki has a close relative that is a single mother, so she is regularly reminded about how difficult caring for all aspects of family alone can be and often admires the grit that her relative maintains. She recognizes that these women first have their entire world turned upside down, then they must pick up the pieces to be everything, all day, for the kids and for themselves.
Heather Giese

Heather Giese

Community Outreach Coordinator

I have worked in many successful industries, including as a brand ambassador and in account management. But having my son made me realize the single greatest and most rewarding position I have and will ever hold- is simply being Mom. I have been raising my son for the past few years as a single mother and have found so much strength, purpose, drive and perseverance in this journey.
I serve with Giving Words online community/social media platforms. The virtual/online community has been life-changing and our network called Single Moms Global Community (on Facebook) enables women from all walks of life to connect and grow a support network where distance is not an issue! This is for single moms, and anyone who was raised by a single mom, to come together to share skills and inspire one another to keep on growing.
My vision is not just to put a band aid on single mamas’ wounds, but to go deeper and help you to heal from within. When this happens, your children will grow up proud and you will truly learn to love yourself as the amazing and powerful woman that you are.
The story of any single mum is not an easy one, but little did I know that my story starting from a difficult experience would lead to my life’s mission and purpose to serve in the healing process with our initial Giving Words group as well as our broader group focus to further help moms connect through Giving words with Solo MOMents Together and our Single Moms Global communities. Here we help beautiful souls who also share a story- one that may not be easy to tell but is full of resilience and strength. I am passionate that by building this community we can get through anything together!
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Kate Fletcher

Care Team

"I’ve been a single mom for almost twenty years now. What I remember most about those early days are the 'what ifs' that ran through my head at night. What if my old house needs a major repair? How will I fix it? What if my car stops running? How will I get to work? What if I have to pay my entire deductible for one hospital visit? Which symptoms can I afford to ignore?
Eventually, all of these imagined scenarios did indeed become realities. Thankfully, I was employed, with decent health insurance and good credit. As a result, I was able to cope with each challenge as it surfaced and stay afloat. But what if they had all happened in quick succession, as waves crashing one after another? I’m not so sure I could have coped, even as fortunate as I was in many regards.
Unfortunately, for too many single moms, these challenges never stop piling up, as one difficulty inevitably leads to the next insecurity. This is where Giving Words steps in to help break the cycle. Eddie and Ginny Brown understand that their helping hands don’t just fix a mother’s immediate problem, but also interrupt the downstream disasters that were lining up to occur next. Giving Words knows that one dam can prevent many floods, just as one act of unconditional love and support can prevent many “what ifs.”
My own child is no longer a child. She and I didn’t just survive. We thrived. Now it’s my turn to support my fellow moms and their children through Giving Words. It’s my turn to hear their “what ifs” and help to provide some answers."
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Keria Dix

Care Team

"I’m Keria. I have had the privilege of serving The Lord through Giving Words for about two years. I have been married to my high school sweetheart, Jared for 7 years as and we have two amazing + wild kiddos!
I have had the privilege of sitting down with Eddie + Ginny (our fearless leaders) in the early stages of Giving Words and hearing all of their amazing ideas. Over the past two years they have brought SO many of those ‘ideas’ to life. I have learned so much from them and have seen them continue to seek Christ FIRST in every aspect of Giving Words. To say that they genuinely care for each mother that comes to Giving Words does not seem adequate. They LOVE each mother and their children as if they have known them for YEARS. A mirror of true Christ-like love!
When you give to Giving Words you are giving LOVE to a mama who may not know true love. You are giving HOPE to a mother who may have been HOPELESS for years. But most of all, you are helping us share the gospel to women who are in need!
To be a part of the Giving Words family is such a blessing to me. I am so proud of be a member of this team and know that God has even better things in store for Giving Words!"
Erika Rodgers

Erika Rodger

Care Team

Erika has spent the past 25 years following her passion of adding value to people’s lives. She is an Adoption/Special Needs Advocate, Business Owner and Mom of many, 10 to be exact. If there is a “type” of mom out there, she has probably been it as a bio mom, special needs mom, adoptive mom, public school mom, stay at home mom, working mom and single mom. Erika is a Life Coach, Behavioral Analysis DISC Trainer and John Maxwell Certified Speaker. At the heart of every presentation is Erika’s driving message of living purposefully and communicating at your very best.
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Greg Dorazio

PR Partner

"Being a single parent is challenging. It can be even harder when you don’t have a local tribe to help take a little pressure off and give you encouragement and guidance. Giving Words provides that, and it all starts with coming alongside a single mother struggling with a car emergency. ⠀

For many of the moms we serve at Giving Words, their car is their biggest asset. It’s their critical connection to work, to school, to medical appointments, to the kids’ practices, and to time with family and friends. But it’s also their biggest challenge. Maintenance is an expense, in time and money. Repairs are totally life-disrupting, and just getting good information about what’s needed can be difficult. When moms join the Giving Words network, they’ve got support in resolving those problems. They’ve got someone they can trust to make sure the work gets done right. And they become part of a tribe looking out for them and dedicated to their stability, growth, and success. ⠀

I’m blessed to support Giving Words and help Ginny and Eddie fulfill their amazing mission."