Meet the Team


Ashley Rhodes-Courter, MSW

Ashley spent almost ten years in foster care before being adopted at the age of 12. Many of her placements were incredibly abusive. Today, Ashley is an MSW, and author of the International and New York Times Bestselling memoir, “Three Little Words,” and “Three More Words.” Ashley has spoken world-wide about child welfare, families, human rights, and advocacy. From a young age, she believed that education and community were key tools to survival. Having now been a Guardian ad Litem (CASA) volunteer, foster parent, and adoptive parent, she aims to strengthen and empower other families and youth to succeed. She recognizes that families and individuals must have access to the skills and education they need to sustain themselves emotionally, nutritionally, and functionally.

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Erick Smith

Erick was born and raised in St. Petersburg, Florida. Growing up, his family grew nourishing fruits and vegetables in their backyard. His parents’ love and dedication to him and their community inspired Erick take on many civic roles. Erick graduated Eckerd College with a degree in American Studies and a minor in Environmental Studies. Erick and Ashley served as Guardian ad Litem (or CASA) volunteers before they became foster parents. They have cared for over 20 children. Erick is also a conservation volunteer with Pinellas County and has worked with the Sustainable Floridians Master Volunteer Program of University of Florida’s Extension Service, providing researched-based educational programming.

Brandice Corriveau

Brandice C., MSW, LCSW

Brandice, LCSW, is a Florida native and a proud University of South Florida Alum. She completed both her Bachelors in Psychology and Masters in Social Work from USF and holds certificates in Play Therapy and Adoption Competency.  Brandice has provided counseling and support to a wide scope of children in need ranging from the most difficult of foster children to the chronically ill. She is a strong advocate for taking the time to understand a child, their family, and their needs.  Brandice believes it is crucial to provide families with the support they need to strengthen relationships and create a healthy & nurturing home environment.


Sandnes B., MSW, LCSW, CAP

Sandnes earned a Masters of Social Work Degree from the University of South Florida in 1999 and earned a Bachelors of Science in Psychology with a Child Development, Family Relations Minor from Western Carolina University in 1993.  Sandnes has over 15 years experience working in residential and outpatient settings specializing in:  Trauma, Addictions, ADHD, Anger Management, Behavioral Issues, Divorce, Family Conflict, Emotional Disturbances, Grief, Parenting, and Self Esteem.   Cognitive Behavioral, Insight Oriented, and expressive therapies are utilized to develop a working therapeutic relationship with children, teens, and families.  Sandnes utilizes Motivational Enhancement Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (MET-CBT) with Juvenile Outpatient groups and provides individual substance abuse therapy to adults and teenagers.  She also provides clinical supervision for Mental Health and Social Work counselors earning hours towards state licensure.

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Jocelyn Pridemore, BSN, IBCLC

Jocelyn has been a Board Certified Lactation Consultant since 2001. She graduated from the University of South Florida’s College of Nursing in 1994. Jocelyn first became passionate about breastfeeding when she struggled to feed her first son born prematurely in 1996. Since then she has worked in a variety of settings in pediatrics and maternal child health. Her drive and determination to promote and support breastfeeding was put to the ultimate test when she was able to produce breast milk for her adoptive daughter who was brought home in the fall of 2008.  Jocelyn looks forward to continuing to support, promote, and protect breastfeeding and positive parenting initiatives for all families in her community and around the world.


Meredith Keith-Chirch

Owner of Whole Life Health by Meredith (, Meredith Keith-Chirch juggles roles as health educator, homeschooling mother and advocate, dancer, and vocalist, with the common thread being her commitment to causes devoted to self-improvement. Her work has led to increased awareness of the importance of holistic wellness involving one’s lifestyle and the many areas that can be integral to health, including environment, mindset, movement, and nutrition. Car-free by choice, Meredith is a tireless advocate for mindful living and the importance of aligning your lifestyle with your beliefs and passions.

Meredith received her Health Coaching Certification from the Dr. Sears Wellness Institute. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Health Science, with a concentration in Human Development/Family Studies and minors in Psychology and Sociology. She also has a Master’s Degree in Labor and Employment Relations, with a concentration in Human Resources Management.

Meredith teaches online classes that are self-led and accessible from anywhere at anytime! Participation in these online classes includes weekly conference calls led by Meredith to discuss course material as well as a discussion board to support questions and answers at any time. Meredith can also be reached via facebook:


Elliott Darrow, Program Coordinator

Elliott is a student at the University of South Florida pursuing a degree in Zoology. His love for animals and passion for seeing communities grow led him to the unique work at The Foundation for Sustainable Families. With his strong knowledge of animal behavior, Elliott helps provide care and treatment for the rescue animals we support as part of an animal-assisted therapy program. His go-getter personality has been a driving force of creativity and innovation at the Sustainable Family’s Experiential Care Farm. Elliott, an inductee to the National Art Honors Society, crafted special installments on the Farm that help create beautiful, interactive, and educational experiences for visitors of all ages. His award winning artistic ability and creative eye has brightened the grounds and spaces. Elliott has also donated his time by painting murals for other schools and non-profit organizations.