Marissa Brownell - Care Coordinator, CSEM Specialist (Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Minors)

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If you could invent a holiday, it would definitely involve ______________?

I would want a “Try Something New and Face your Fears Day”. I love to try new things, new food and new places and I like to get out of my comfort zone. I think it’s exhilarating to face and overcome our fears. I would also include puppies in there somewhere!

What are your three favorite podcasts and/or books?

I haven’t really gotten into the Podcast world. Favorite books are everchanging. I’m currently reading “Stray-the memoir of a runaway”. I’m usually found reading books that will help with my job or give me a better understanding of my clients. I can also be found looking through architectural and interior design books for fun.

What are you currently binge watching?

Currently binging Community and re-watching Downton Abbey. My go to default is always The Office.

What can you be found doing in your free time?

Hanging with my husband, Playing with our dog, walking and sometimes jogging in nature, cooking new recipes, paint by number, enjoying a good cup of coffee.

What does your job look like day-to-day?

Each day is different but they often consist of meeting with clients (all minors), texting and talking on the phone while I check-in with clients, advocating and finding resources for clients, teaching prevention groups in the community several times a week, creating new group curriculum, writing back to clients in their journals that we share, shopping for group supplies, preparing art projects for groups, working on tracking outcomes, tracking and reporting work with clients, and a lot of driving.

What’s the most inspiring part of your job?

The youth that I work with inspire me every day. Many of them have been through awful situations, but in turn they are the most compassionate, caring and resilient people I have ever met in my life. Also, in the hard times at work, I rely on the success of my clients to inspire me. Seeing them achieve their dreams, grow and rise above their circumstances is one of the best gifts in the world!

Where did you go to college? What did you get your degree in?

I went to California State University and got my B.A in English Literature with an emphasis in Education. I wanted to be a High School teacher, but never was. Now I use that training to create curriculum and teach many teens about resiliency, life skills and hope.

What path led you to work at End Slavery Tennessee?

Even as a young child I was always compassionate towards those facing adversity and injustice.After learning about the issue of Human Trafficking, I moved to Washington DC and began gaining experience doing street outreach for victims and manning their 24 hour emergency line. I later worked in CA with at-risk youth at the YWCA and then in transitional housing at the Orangewood Foundation. There I worked as a Support Specialist assisting countless young women who had been through extensive trauma, in addition to closely working with many trafficking survivors. After moving to TN I set my sights on End Slavery, as their vision and values aligned with my own-and I got my dream job!

If you want to learn more about Marissa click here