WHERE WE BEGAN
Branches Ministries began in 2011 by Dwight Derringer, owner of Never Grow Up, Inc. He had a strong desire to go beyond a simple hello or handshake to really help the teachers and families he saw in his preschools day to day. Dwight comments, “I knew God was calling us to give in a big way, but how? And then it hit me, there are people and families in my company that need help and support.”
Many of them had very specific struggles and some were just looking for encouragement and spiritual guidance. He wanted to do something to help meet the needs of these families and leave a lasting legacy in and throughout their lives. After sharing this vision with his wife Misti Jackson-Derringer, they decided to create a Christian Non-profit organization. Through the blessing of scripture John 15:5, “I am the vine; YOU are the BRANCHES”, Branches Ministries was born.
They began receiving need requests and serving the staff and families right away. Since that time many have been helped through difficult times. Through this ministry, Misti and Dwight have uncovered even more ways to help by partnering with other local non-profits, fundraising and becoming more involved with the staff and families who work and attend their preschools.
Branches works with businesses and organizations around Middle Tennessee to offer Corporate Wellness Partnerships. By working with individual businesses we tailor create a program designed to serve the specific company offering support and hope. You can find out more information about Branches Corporate Wellness Partnerships on our Partnership Page.
MISTI JACKSON-DERRINGER, FOUNDER
I’m a woman. I’m a wife. I am a mother. Before any of that, I am a spiritual seeker. My life journey has taken me on a wild ride of many twists and turns thus far including personal battles with anger, depression, anxiety, abandonment, co-dependency, alcoholism, drug addiction in my family, divorce, grief and loss. Each breakdown has led me to a breakthrough. After spending many years on a path of trying to earn purpose and worthiness (through various exhausting and ineffective ways), I finally was chastened to the painful reality that Jesus already paid that price, the war was won. Once I (slowly) decided to live each day as though God himself walked next to me (which He already did) everything changed. He has opened doors for me that are completely unexplainable. Most recently, I’ve spent the last 9 months training to be a yoga instructor. If you had asked me one year ago what I’d be doing now, I assure you I would not have said ‘teaching yoga’ that’s for sure. But here’s how God works. We yield to Him, He aligns our life perfectly. Is it all rainbows and no rain? I wish, but of course not. It’s in the valleys I am HUMBLY reminded who’s in charge of my life and once again, I yield. God is good, all the time. And He has given us all INDIVIDUAL gifts to share. I’m beyond gracious that He gifted Branches Ministries to us, to serve others as they seek the path from their God-given gifts to His eternity.
KATIE DUFLEURANT, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
We all have a story, line after line represents the pathway of our journey, where we’ve been, how we got there and the people along the way who helped us move to the next step. There are great joys and heartaches that fill the pages of our story. My story is like so many others, through my brokenness I was lost in searching for something bigger. I am so thankful I found Jesus. I am a thankful host of the Holy Spirit and my story continues to unfold as God leads me down the path of intimacy with him. I served on the Mission field in Haiti for three years. This was a pivotal chapter in my story which included walking though a catastrophic earthquake. I was blessed with a burden to not just sit back and watch but to make a difference then and now, but how? My life experiences leading up to my time in Haiti and during the midst of chaos, brought me to a place of simplicity, to just “be”; be together, walk together, live together, hurt together, cry together and rejoice together. God has blessed me with the desire to counsel and meet others in their journey and just “be” with them in their process. My journey has led me to Branches and what a blessing it is to see his hand in it daily. I am honored and truly humbled to be able to come in contact with hundreds of people as he writes their story. My hope is, through Branches, lives with be changed and beautiful stories will come together in community.
“Everyone needs someone beside em’ shining like a lighthouse from the sea” Needtobreath “Brother”
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
GLOBAL ADVISORY TEAM
We continuously strive to seek Godly counsel to advise help us as we navigate the future steps for Branches. God has blessed us and continues to do so, it is our hope that we make wise decisions day-to-day to carry out the mission we feel called to carry out. If you are interested in serving on our advisory team we would love the opportunity to share what that looks like. Please feel free to contact us.