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Meet Our Advocacy Coordinator, Brandice McDowell!

“Do justice, love kindness, walk humbly” Micah 6:8 (paraphrased) is one of my favorite passages that has been a shining light in my life’s journey. I am humbled and honored to begin serving as the Advocacy Coordinator for Kids Win Missouri. My journey in advocacy is rooted in social work, as well as personal experiences that have shaped my strong views on empowering and supporting families and children. No matter what role I am in, my forever goal is to leave those around me feeling feel safe, valued and loved. 

My studies began at the University of Missouri where I earned my stripes as a proud Mizzou tiger and McNair Scholar. I completed my BA in Psychology with Multicultural Studies, Black Studies and Sociology as minors. It was through my undergraduate studies and lived experiences that I learned how vitally important diversity, access and equity are. During my time in Columbia, I served in multiple leadership roles for student organizations as the president and founder. I also volunteered at Hickman High School, mentoring a handful of female students, preparing them with life skills and holding group counseling sessions. 

In 2014, I grew my roots (and love!) for St. Louis when I began my graduate studies at Washington University in St. Louis – Brown School of Social Work. There I earned my Masters in Social Work, and began my entrepreneurial journey. 

At the beginning of my Social Work career, I had the opportunity to work at the Board of Administration for Saint Louis Public Schools, which gave me a macro-perspective of the systematic issues that vulnerable families face on a daily basis. I eventually shifted direct practice- serving in the field with students and their families. There I counseled, mediated, advocated and provided extended resources within charter schools in the St. Louis region. It was through these experiences that my passion grew deeper for mental and emotional health, diversity, equity, and overall seeing people and communities thrive. 

Outside of the professional scope, my husband and I serve our community as ministers with our two precious daughters, Aria and Mila. We own a small business where we handcraft natural candles and teach a variety of classes around creative arts. I also serve as a creative consultant for individuals and organizations – strategizing outside of the box, in order to reach goals and create tangible outcomes and solutions. I enjoy reading, dancing, traveling and am a self-proclaimed foodie.

As parents of two young girls, my husband and I have first-hand experience of the challenges within the early child care system. The issues that Kids Win Missouri works to resolve resonate deeply with me. With a lens of empathy and understanding – I am prepared to listen well, support and advocate with and for the parents, providers and partners in Missouri. I am truly grateful and excited for the opportunity to serve in this capacity! You will see me around engaging with families we serve, on Monthly Update calls, Child Care Advisory Group calls and other partnership calls. I look forward to connecting with you! If I can be of assistance, please feel free to reach me at: bmcdowell@kidswinmissouri.org.

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