• Marisa Zeppieri-Caruana

Trees of Hope 10th Anniversary Celebration

Trees of Hope Anniversary

Every year at Trees of Hope we host an annual fundraiser. It is a special event we look forward to all year long and it provides us with the support we need to continue this important mission. This year’s fundraiser was extra special, as it also marked our ten-year anniversary. The event was filled with many of our supporters, friends, family members, and also brave and incredible men and women who have completed one of our sexual abuse survivor programs.

The Trees of Hope ten-year anniversary celebration, which was held this past April at Hughes Catering in Fort Lauderdale, was enjoyed by over 100 people and included speakers that are close to our heart and our purpose. Some of the speakers included:

  • Doug Sauder, who many of you know as the Lead Pastor of Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale. Doug, a long time supporter of Trees of Hope, compared Dee (TOH founder) to Harriet Tubman, as they both advocate for the enslaved. He shared how Harriet carried a gun with her, not to protect them from the enemy but to point at the slaves when they wanted to give up, and quoted her famous saying "I freed a thousand slaves. I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.”

  • In addition, SOSI Program Director for 4Kids, Ken Lacy, was a speaker with a unique message. If you weren’t able to attend the celebration, Ken Lacey is a sexual abuse survivor who successfully completed the ROOTS Program at Trees of Hope. ROOTS offers a safe space for men to discuss a topic that is typically not shared with many. Here, men will also learn how to openly and safely talk about their experience, how it has affected them, and learn key concepts and methodologies that can help them begin the healing process.

  • Bree was another speaker who spoke openly about being a sexual abuse survivor and her journey through our BLOOM Program. Trees of Hope is excited to welcome Bree as one of our newest volunteers. She will be bringing our BLOOM program to colleges and high schools around the area.

In addition to incredible speakers, our 10th year anniversary was a time for us to acknowledge and thank our corporate sponsors. The individuals and companies sponsoring Trees of Hope has been vital in propelling our organization forward to serve more people in need. The Trees of Hope mission is to fight for the one person who is enslaved by the burdens of sexual abuse. These burdens can destroy someone’s life and the lives of those around them. Through our prevention and healing programs, we fight for the one who is enslaved and may not even recognize it. This fight could not be won without the help of the following sponsors:

Moss Construction

Moss is a family built, privately held construction firm with a long track record of building award-winning, sustainable and innovative structures. Honoring relationships is the foundation of the company’s core values. Through the Moss Foundation they are dedicated to giving back to the communities where they work and live. Learn more about Moss at www.mosscm.com

Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale

With a desire to connect people to God, and to other people, Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale has been an important spiritual lifeline to the visitors and residents of South Florida for decades. Learn more about their mission and campuses at www.Calvaryftl.org


Grycon has played an integral part in the construction and engineering space in Florida thanks to their dedication of building with precision, delivering on time, keeping projects within budget, and offering personal service. Find out more at www.Grycon.net

Proietto Painting

Proietto has grown through the years to become one of Florida’s most respected and trusted painting companies. The company’s craftsmen have painted notable structures that include Walk Disney Resorts in Orlando and The Performing Arts Center in Fort Lauderdale, in addition to many luxury residences throughout the State. Learn more at www.proietto.com

Rio Vista Community Church

Founded in 1941, you can find Rio Vista Community Church in the southeast area of Downtown Fort Lauderdale. The church describes itself as a place where skeptics can question, seekers can find answers, and believers can grow in Christ. Learn more at www.riovistachurch.com


Founded in 2012, HayesLocums provides trustworthy and reliable placement services on a temporary and permanent basis to physicians and healthcare organizations around the United States. Read more about the company at www.HayesLocums.com

We are grateful for each one of our sponsors and couldn’t continue this important work without their support. There is still so much work to do in the realm of sexual abuse. We look forward to helping more men and women find freedom from the burdens of sexual abuse.

To learn more about our prevention program at Trees of Hope, click here . We hope to see you in April of 2018 as we celebrate our 11th anniversary!

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