Debbie Thomas-Brown is the Founder and CEO for South Florida Connects, Inc. (SFC), a local Miramar, community outreach and advocacy organization.
South Florida Connects has two websites, one of which is the social arm of the organization at southfloridaconnects.com where they educate, encourage, empower, and offer peer support to straight spouses, their families, friends and others who want to learn about straight spouse awareness issues.
The other arm of SFC, the philanthropic side with its outreach website at southfloridaconnects.org, encourages individuals to ‘reach out and touch’ each other in a humanitarian way with acts of kindness.
Debbie has worked in Community Outreach for many years, as a beacon of positive change in neighborhoods throughout Broward County and Miami-Dade, Florida. She has utilized her roles as Nurse, Former High School Teacher, and Community Outreach Advocate, to help develop programs that serve the community, and raise awareness to create a lasting impact and improve lives.
She is a recognized spokesperson for straight spouses in The Caribbean Community in South Florida, and has interviewed on several radio shows, including Perspectives on WAVS 1170AM, on Straight Wives, a Blog Talk Radio Show, and The Donneth Show with ‘Community Solutions’ a local community outreach radio show she co-hosts on WAVS 1170AM.
Debbie is a sought-after source of information in the Caribbean Community, as she speaks with the authority of personal experience, shared experience, and lots of research.
A native of Jamaica, Debbie enjoys living in South Florida, and has adopted a low key, laid back style, that keeps her accessible to community members, who need her assistance navigating difficult issues. Active in community life, Debbie has a philanthropic nature and volunteers extensively to help members of her community with life's challenges. She is the Volunteer Media Liaison/Web Designer, for Family & Friends Connection, Inc. a dynamic, local community outreach organization. She volunteers her time and expertise as a self taught, web designer for several churches, groups and community non-profits.
She is not afraid to take on tough issues, and publicly advocates for victims and survivors of domestic violence and abuse. Debbie understands what it means when a victim needs help, as she was married to an abusive man, and is a survivor of domestic violence herself. She volunteers with NACA, a non profit organization that helps low income, and disadvantaged homeowners acquire low income mortgages, and advocates on behalf of financially challenged homeowners, who need mortgage solutions.
Helping homeowners find affordable mortgage modifications that are fair and equitable, is a real challenge, but Debbie helps homeowners clear this hurdle. She was instrumental in helping many people, who successfully used NACA to lock in cost saving mortgage modifications, preventing foreclosure on hundreds of Floridian Homes.
Debbie enjoys her job as a Nurse with the Veterans Administration, but her passion is working with volunteer organizations such as South Florida Connects, Inc. Hands On Broward, NACA, Family & Friends Connection, Inc. Feeding South Florida, numerous churches, schools and businesses, and is the Community Outreach Director at her local church, a Place of Restoration.
She currently provides straight spouse awareness education via locac community radio programs and via Internet on BlogTalk Radio a popular podcast media.
She has a number of community outreach, and volunteer service awards, earned for her community outreach and advocacy. She was awarded The Presidential Volunteer Service Award, and was named A Daily Point of Light by The Points of Light Foundation on October 3, 2012, for her outsdanding work with straight spouse awareness education.
The former high School teacher, and accounting analyst, enjoys research and blogging, and has contributed articles to several online blogs and websites, most notably, The Upbeat Dad and CNN iReport. With a career in Nursing, she works with Veterans and is a serious, unpublished writer, in the editing stages of her new book, No Spouse Left Behind: Straight Spouse Awareness: Understanding Same Sex Infidelity and It's Effects on The Straight Spouse.
Now she works earnestly, locally, to help Straight Spouses navigate through living life with spouses on the 'down low', and find their way back to normal lives, through self empowerment. Helping Straight Spouses became one of her passions, after she realized that she nearly married a secretly gay man. She feels that many women lacking the information and resources she has access to, are defenseless against the wiles of a gay man who intends to use her as a 'cover'.
As a devout Christian, she believes that some women in the church are hurting more than they should, because their husband’s secret gay lifestyles are impacting them, emotionally, psychologically, socially, sexually, and physically.
Debbie is a member of internationally know, Straight Spouse Expert, Bonnie Kaye’s Support Network, where she is the Immigrant and Minority Liaison. She currently provides email peer support to anyone who reaches out for help, and is available to do workshops and seminars for church groups, schools and community groups.
Debbie said, "One never knows what curve balls life will throw at you, but you must be prepared to use your experiences, to improve and encourage yourself and others." She is a woman of great compassion, and dislikes injustice in any form. Debbie does not claim to be a survivor of a relationship with a gay man, but seriously suspects that she came close to becoming one. She doubts he will ever admit being gay, but continues to believe that her intuition, sense of discernment, and God's grace, saved her from a ton of heart aches and pain. Yes, she really believes she could have been married to a 'brother' whom she strongly suspects, is seriously involved in down low living.
Debbie said, ‘Because we are Christians, we believe our faith puts us in a unique situation, where we feel insulated, as if nothing bad will happen to us. Sometimes God hand picks us, and allows evil to come near us, so he can use the experience, to teach us how to handle trauma in our lives, and become stronger, so we can help others, who may lack our fortitude and faith.’
She also said "Personally, I know that if we are going to make any inroads into stopping 'down low behavior', the church and society in general, must finally come to terms with the fact that, homosexuality does exist, and that gay people are not evil, and are human just like the rest of us.
It should also be understood that people do not choose their sexual orientation, because why would anyone want to be vilified and stigmatized, if they have a choice. When gay people are accepted as main stream, like alcoholics, gamblers, and prostitutes, gay men and women, will have fewer reasons to hide behind the unsuspecting women and men who love them. Then it will be between them and God."
Debbie continues to provide a source of education, empowerment, and peer support, for those who are angry, hurting, scared, abused, emotionally distressed, sexually deprived, physically sick, and neglected, because of the (DL) deceptive gay lifestyles of their husbands, wives and significant others. She said, ‘It may even be a member of your church, and especially your pastor. You can never tell where you will find it, as we are in the last days.’
As a team, Debbie and her daughter said they will try hard; to help people get the support and information they need to make informed decisions, and protect themselves. They will provide education and insight, and most of all, encouragement and support, through their websites, or any other media means available. They will decide what is necessary, and relevant, based on needs and requests, as time goes by. Stated needs will be kept in the forefront, as they monitor requests for specific information, help or peer support outreach, as individuals come to terms with their personal situation.
"Being vigilant does not necessarily guarantee that you won't connect with a DL brother, or secret lesbian woman, but you can at least be prepared with information and an avenue for support...just in case life throws you a curve ball, and you happen to love one of them."
"Your healing journey will be at a speed that you dictate, and can handle. There is light at the end of the tunnel. Stay blessed as we work together, to bring healing to those in need, says SFC's CEO, Debbie."
Debbie can be reached via her organization's website at: www.southfloridaconnects.com Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 954-983-9751