Hope at Hand is a recognized service provider specializing in struggling youth populations. Blending poetry with art and wellness strategies creates a safe environment for participants to realize their own abilities, cope with their extraordinary stresses of life and become better able to contribute to their communities. We facilitate hope.

Since 2009, Hope at Hand has developed from a small grassroots nonprofit to one that now provides services to a wide range of populations and community organizations. Hope at Hand staff members have specialized training in education, meditation, poetry therapy and counseling. Our reputation as a direct service provider is reliable and the demand for services is increasing.

Steffani Fletcher

Founder & Executive Director

From Jacksonville, FL

Family, friends, travel and downtime brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Sink or swim? I grew fins.

Message to my younger self: Follow your heart and avoid toxic people. Move about the world with grace and courtesy, after 40 it's smooth sailing.

BA, Elementary Education

MA, Educational Leadership

American Montessori Society

International Federation of Biblio/Poetry Therapy

Poem by

Steffani Fletcher

Emma Cooper

Curriculum Development

From: Atlantic Beach, FL

The beach brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: No apologies for who I am 

Message to my younger self: It WILL pass. Take it day by day. Focus on the things you love. 

Home School Graduate, Class of 2019

Poem by

Emma Cooper

Brooks Decker

Poetry Facilitator

From: Atlanta, GA

Giving brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Everyone has a story, listen intently

Message to my younger self: Get out of your head. There is so much light at the end of the tunnel. 

Student: BA, Psychology

Poem by

Brooks Decker

Jamie Gustason

Poetry Facilitator

From: Naples, FL

Learning new things brings me great joy.

6 Word Memoir: Change your perception, change your reality.

Message to my younger self: There is so much more to be revealed. Be patient, stay curious, and never forget that your voice is the greatest power you have.

BS, Elementary Education

Student: MS, Curriculum and Instruction

K-5 Reading Endorsement

Kennedy Center Arts Integration Training

Poem by

Jamie Gustason

Saymme Hostetler

Social Media Specialist

From: Jacksonville, FL

Empathy, honesty and self-worth brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Not every action requires a reaction

Message to my younger self: Don't be afraid to speak your truth. If you never ask the answer will always be no. 

AFA, Photography

Poem by

Saymme Hostetler

Jakyra Hunter

Poetry Facilitator

From: Colorado

Bodies of water bring me great joy

6 Word Memoir: I am indestructible to life's challenges 

Message to my younger self: You are going to go so far and you will lead many to better also.

BS, Psychology

US Navy Reserve, Acoustic Warfare Operator

Poem by

Jakyra Hunter

Emily Knight-Smith

Volunteer Support

From: Jacksonville, FL

Nature and Water brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Make time to see something beautiful.

Message to my younger self: Take small steps that scare you, everything will fall into place. 

BA, English Literature

Minor in Professional Education 

ESE Certification & Reading Certification 

Poem by

Emily Knight-Smith

Sue Kornhauser

Administrative Assistant

From: Boston, MA

My family brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Reach others and make a difference

Message to my younger self: Live with more curiosity, love without judgement and never stop looking for opportunities to grow personally and professionally.

Studied at Northeastern University

A.R.R.T (Radiologic Technology)

A.R.D.M.S (Ultrasound Tech)

Poem by

Sue Kornhauser

Zsa Zsa Laing

Poetry Facilitator 

From: the Bahamas

Seeing a spark of interest and understanding in a young person's eyes brings me great joy.

6 Word Memoir: Love is what I strive for

Message to my younger self: Give yourself time to grow, things are never as desperate as they seem and you have much to offer.  Take chances. Go adventuring!

BA, Interdisciplinary Studies

English 6-12 Teaching Certificate

Minor in African Diaspora Studies

Poem by

Zsa Zsa M. Laing

Julie Michael


From: Southern Chester County, PA

Loving and being loved brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Living Actively, Marching to My Drumbeat

Message to my younger self: Be true to yourself. Choose to be happy. Embrace challenges. Keep moving forward. 

University of Kentucky

Various fitness certifications including older adult and maternal fitness

Poem by

Julie Michael

Sarah Niss

Poetry Facilitator

From: Rye, NY

Friends, family and the outdoors brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Always look forward to new adventures

Message to my younger self: Dream even bigger.

BA, Political Science

K-6 Certified Teacher

Poem by

Sarah Niss

Jamie Rosseland

Social Media Manager

From: Jacksonville, FL

Nature, art, friends, and family brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Forget fear - Live always in Abundance

Message to my younger self: Always be kinder to yourself. 

Student: BS, Interdisciplinary Social Sciences

Poem by

Jamie Rosseland

Kristi Lee Schatz

Poetry Facilitator

From: Flagler County, FL

Dancing brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Playful professional opening hearts and minds

Message to my younger self: May you always find the courage to express yourself fully.

BA, Psychology

MA, Counseling Psychology

Specialization in Creative Expression

Poem by

Kristi Lee Schatz

Kady Smaglis

Event Support

From: Jacksonville, FL

Friends, Family, and life brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Coffee ... the fuel of my life

Message to my younger self: Be yourself and never apologize for that

BS, Communications

Poem by

Kady Smaglis

Gloria Truesdale

Program Support

From: Wesley Chapel, North Carolina

Helping others, crafting, making jewelry & spending quality time with family and friends brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Work Hard - Survive.  Dream Big - Thrive.

Message to my younger self: Remember during the tough times, "the race is not always won to the swiftest (or the most cutest), but to the one who endures to the end."  So just hang in there for this too shall pass.

Studied Commercial Arts; AA Education; Certificate Computer Programming


Poem by

Gloria Truesdale

Taryn Wharwood

Poetry Facilitator

From: Miami, FL

Helping others, creating and meeting new people brings me great joy

6 Word Memoir: Life: All you need is love. 

Message to my younger self: It's never too late to be what you might have been. 

Student: BA English and Creative Writing 


Poem by

Taryn Wharwood



Stephanie Stephens
Board Chair
Early Literacy Content Specialist


Keitha Nelson

First Coast News

Judy Covington-Poole
Board Vice Chair

IT Manager
CSX, Transportation

Dr. Natalie Indelicato
Assistant Professor & Clinical Director

Jacksonville University

Jeff Blount
Board Treasurer
Landsouth Construction
Divison Manager, Senior Living

Cynthia Baines
Vice President
Fidelity National Financial

Dr Nile Stanley
Associate Professor of Childhood Education
University of North Florida

Ashlie Hufford
Business Banker
First Citizens Bank

501(c)3 Non-profit

Hope at Hand is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. All contributions are tax-deductible as allowed by law.

EIN 24-4333301

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Contact Us

3886 Atlantic Blvd. Jacksonville, FL 32207

(904) 868-4673


© 2021 Hope at Hand. All Rights Reserved. 

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