For 24/7 counsel, call the National Veteran Crisis Hotline at 988, Press 1. You may also call the Florida Veterans Support Line at 1-844-MyFLVet (1-844-693-5838) or dial 211.


First Lady Casey Strengthens Florida’s Families through Hope Florida

December 27, 2023

TALLAHASSEE — First Lady Casey DeSantis highlighted Dec. 22 the continued success of the Hope Florida initiative. Throughout the year, the First Lady has reaffirmed her commitment to support and advocate for Florida’s children, families, and vulnerable populations by breaking down community silos to unite faith institutions, nonprofits, private sector entities and government.

Over the last year, some of the Hope Florida initiative’s successes include:

  • Over 80,000 Floridians in need served by Hope Florida to date.


    • More than 24,000 Hope Florida participants had a reduced reliance or are no longer relying on public assistance to meet their food or cash needs.


    • Over a 10-year period, participant reduction of public assistance will save taxpayers over $700 million.


  • Over 1,000 foster youth have been supported by Hope Florida.


    • 616 former foster youth received help accessing a college and university tuition waiver.


  • 453 foster youth are working with a long-term mentor to prepare for their future.


  • Over 1,750 faith institutions and church response teams across the state united to serve Floridians through Hope Florida and CarePortal, making this initiative the largest statewide cooperative faith effort in the country.


    • Over 6,000 needs have been met by Florida faith communities through the CarePortal.


“Hope Florida continues to connect and harness the goodwill of amazing nonprofits, faith institutions, and private sector partners to serve Floridians in need and put them on a path for long-term success,” said First Lady Casey DeSantis. “I am proud of the work we have done over the past year, and I look forward to doing even more in 2024 to help Floridians achieve their God-given potential.”

Some significant milestones for the initiative this year include:

  • Hope Florida expanded to partner with private sector business entities in providing employment opportunities for Floridians through CareerSource Florida. New College of Florida joined Hope Florida as the first educational partner, guaranteeing jobs to Hope Florida participants and scholarship opportunities. Click here to learn about private-sector partnership.




  • Representatives from states including Arkansas, Georgia, Iowa, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Tennessee attended The Hope Solution event to learn about Hope Florida and ways to replicate the model in other states.


  • The Statewide Guardian ad Litem office launched Hope Florida – A Pathway to Promise, assisting youth transitioning from foster care to adulthood by providing a long-term mentor and offering a strong start to their future. Utilizing both Guardian ad Litem volunteers and the Department of Elder Affairs’ Hope Heroes, this agency has recruited over 415 active mentors across the state.



  • Through the Hope Florida Fund, the First Lady awarded nearly half a million dollars to over 40 deserving nonprofits across the state that serve children and families in need.


Floridians who are in need of services can connect with Hope Florida by visiting or calling the Hope Line (850-300-HOPE).

Hope Florida, launched by First Lady DeSantis in 2021, has been implemented by multiple agencies including The Florida Department of Children and Families, The Florida Department of Elder Affairs, The Florida Department of Juvenile Justice, Agency for Persons with Disabilities, Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs, and The Guardian ad Litem Office. This initiative utilizes Hope Navigators to guide Floridians on an individualized path to prosperity and economic self-sufficiency by focusing on community collaboration between the private sector, faith-based community, nonprofits, and government entities to break down traditional community silos to maximize support and uncover opportunities. These Hope Navigators are essential in helping individuals identify their unique and immediate barriers to prosperity, develop long-term goals, map out a strategic plan, and work to ensure all sectors of the community have a ‘seat at the table’ to be a key part of the solution. In addition, Hope Navigators help identify and organize opportunities for Floridians who wish to help their neighbors by connecting community members, including Florida seniors, with volunteer and mentorship opportunities.