On Thursday, Gov. Ron DeSantis launched the Governor’s Faith and Community-Based Initiative.
DeSantis announced the effort “to collaborate between state government and Florida’s faith-based institutions and community organizations, enhancing agencies’ existing work to support Florida citizens” and tapped Erik Dellenback to serve on Florida Faith-Based and Community-Based Council to oversee it and advise the governor’s office and the Legislature.
“The goals of the council are to enlist, enable, empower and expand the work of volunteer faith-based and community-based organizations,” the governor’s office noted.
“Florida’s faith and community-based groups have a longstanding history of intervening to help meet the needs of all Floridians,” said DeSantis on Thursday.
“An important initiative of my Hope for Healing Florida campaign is that it brings together all sectors of the community, including the public, private and faith-based sectors, to the table to help forge meaningful solutions to the substance abuse and mental health challenges facing our state,” said First Lady Casey DeSantis. “Faith-based partners serve a critical role as our ‘boots on the ground’ within our towns and cities. Only with their support and ingenuity can we truly achieve the best results for our most vulnerable citizens.”
“Our communities are rich in organizations that are actively searching for opportunities to uplift Florida’s children and families,” said Department of Children and Families (DCF) Sec. Chad Poppell. “In fact, I‘ve heard from several faith-based leaders that are ready to mobilize their congregations to support vulnerable children. With the Governor’s Faith and Community-Based Initiative, I am confident that we can make this important connection and ensure DCF is streamlining access to Florida’s foster and adoptive families.”
“I feel incredibly blessed to serve the state of Florida in this capacity,” said Dellenback. “It is my prayer that God will use my experience and passion to allow the state and faith-based community to work together to more efficiently care for Florida’s vulnerable citizens. The truth is, both groups already care deeply about lost and neglected people, but through this initiative, we will increase communication and identify ways that we can support each other’s missions.”
Dellenback had served as the president and executive director of the Tim Tebow Foundation (TTF) for seven years and worked more than a decade with the Gator Bowl Association as the director of the ACC Football Championship when it was held in Jacksonville and as the vice president/chief marketing officer.
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