IMG_7105Sean Lawrence

Executive Director | [email protected]

Sean joined Giving Children Hope in 2010 and serves as the Executive Director. He quite possibly has one of the most hectic schedules at Giving Children Hope, to say the least. He is either meeting with board members, educating potential donors on our mission, brainstorming with staff members, traveling abroad for the organization or attending events on behalf of Giving Children Hope. Sean grew up as a missionary kid in Southeast Asia and later worked with his church in Southern California to develop a missions program that extended to Japan and Rwanda. In addition, Sean spent several years reporting on missions work and humanitarian crises around the world for a mission’s magazine. Sean’s light-hearted and funny personality definitely makes working at Giving Children Hope enjoyable for the staff and volunteers.

Global Operations


Mikaela Buchanan

Global Operations and Executive Coordinator | [email protected]

Mikaela assists with Giving Children Hope’s global operation partners in order to distribute much needed relief supplies to people around the world. These supplies are distributed internationally as a result of natural disasters, famine, social upheaval or it may simply be because it is a heavily poverty-stricken area. Mikaela also assists Giving Children Hope’s Executive Director in the daily operations of the organization.

Domestic Programs

IMG_8489Christine Sanchez

Director of Domestic Programs | [email protected]

Christine oversees Giving Children Hope’s domestic programs like We've Got Your Back and Giving for Living. She spends a great deal of time and energy connecting resources at Giving Children Hope with partners in our local communities. Christine comes to work everyday with drive and motivation that she passes onto our partners at Giving Children Hope. Christine is a busy hockey mom who graduated from Mount Saint Mary's University. 

IMG_8562Jacob Wilson

Assistant Director of Domestic Programs| [email protected]

Jacob works tirelessly to ensure our nonprofit partners and schools receive the product they need to serve the poor in our local communities. He learns and understands our partners' needs and is always seeking opportunities to share the donations entrusted to Giving Children Hope. At the same time, he balances a multitude of donor guidelines and program logistics to keep the program running smoothly. Jacob will tell you that the best part of being in charge of our donation center is that he has the privilege of donating product to worthy partners and schools. Jacob is also a podcast junkie and enjoys listening to public radio and comedy podcasts. He’s actually made a few of his own!


Elia Perez

 Administrative Coordinator, We've Got Your Back | [email protected]

As the Administrative Coordinator of our backpack program, Eli's job requires her to wear many hats all at once! She acts as the liaison between the schools and families that are involved with Giving Children Hope. This requires her to identify families who could benefit from the resources that Giving Children Hope offers. If the family needs a resource that our organization does not offer, Eli always finds another organization or program that does! Eli also oversees the Christmas Wish List program ensuring every homeless child on our program and their siblings receive a magical Christmas. Her daily duties require her to deal with a lot of paperwork, social work and therapist-like responsibilities that she gladly carries out.


Rosa Rueda

Logistics Coordinator, Giving for Living | [email protected]

Rosa runs the Giving for Living donation center and makes sure that the program has everything it needs to continue providing services to those who can benefit the most ! She also oversees all of the handling fees and logistics to make sure everything stays afloat. Rosa feels blessed to have a job that enables her to help families in need. In her free time, Rosa enjoys going on walks and spending quality time with her children.



SueLynn Yoo

Development Associate | [email protected]

As Giving Children Hope’s Development Associate, SueLynn works to maintain healthy relationships with corporations, churches, and individual donors. She is the initial contact for corporate and individual volunteers, which involves scheduling and taking them on a tour of the facility. SueLynn also assists the Development Director with fundraising and related events. SueLynn is a UCLA graduate who is an extremely talented singer and bakes impressive desserts.

IMG_4929Savannah Esquivel

Marketing and Communications Coordinator | [email protected]

Savannah is the Marketing & Communications Coordinator who has the exciting task of capturing the many stories at Giving Children Hope. She worked as an intern here several years ago, and has come back to help develop and execute the marketing and communications strategy. She is so excited to be at Giving Children Hope and to play a role in bringing hope and assistance to families here and around the world.


IMG_4955Jessica Rickerts

Director of Administration | [email protected]

Jessica splits her time to make sure all of the office technology is functioning properly, ensure that all organizational paperwork remains up-to-date, writes and edits grants, plus a myriad of other projects that fall on her desk. Born and raised in Orange County, Jessica graduated summa cum laude from California State University, Fullerton, with a B.A. in Communications, with an emphasis in public relations and a minor in English. She joined Giving Children Hope in 2008.

joe bergfalk

Joe Bergfalk

Director of Budgets and Finance

Joe manages Giving Children Hope’s budgets and completes the payroll. Joe is retired after a 32-year career with the YMCA. He held positions that included CEO of the San Gabriel Valley YMCA; CEO of the YMCA of Riverside City and County; and Senior Vice President of the YMCA of Greater Long Beach, as well as numerous Executive Director assignments in that association.


Barbara Berg

Bookkeeper | [email protected]

Barbara runs the accounting side of Giving Children Hope. Barb first learned of Giving Children Hope through her church youth group and would volunteer her time with the We've Got Your Back program to pack backpacks. She wanted to give back to the community and felt that someone in need could benefit from any bit of help that she was able to offer. Barb came to California from Omaha, Nebraska and knows that this is where God has meant for her to live.


Laurette Zapata

Front Office Administrator | [email protected]

Laurette is a lifesaver here at Giving Children Hope. She’s most likely the person who will answer your phone calls, complete data entries, sort out all of the mail and handle any packaging that needs for the directors and coordinators. Laurette is an active member in her church and always appreciates the beauties in life that God has blessed her with. Laurette enjoys taking full advantage of her senior-citizen discount when she’s out on the town!


IMG_8568Marius Marza

Warehouse Manager | [email protected]

Marius is the Warehouse Manager who has the hectic task of ensuring that all of our international and local donations are properly received and distributed. When he isn’t on the forklift loading containers, he is busy tending to warehouse inventory and medical supplies. Marius came to the United States from Romania bringing with him an understanding of what it's like to grow up in an impoverished country. Today he is glad to have the ability to help those who are without resources. Marius enjoys spending time with his beautiful wife and baby boy… and don’t forget to ask him to pick up a coin with the forklift, you’ll be amazed!

IMG_8441 Paul Geisert

Assistant Warehouse Manager | [email protected]

Paul began at Giving Children Hope in 2011. Ever since, he has proven himself to be an extremely valuable asset to the team. Paul currently holds the title of Assistant Warehouse Manager and assists Marius in preparing and loading supplies that our organization ships locally, domestically and overseas. A large part of Paul’s responsibility is to ensure that the warehouse staff, shipment process and merchandise are all functioning smoothly and properly. Paul’s willing attitude is his greatest strength but it sometimes lands him with the funniest of jobs here at Giving Children Hope. Paul also leads our veggie picking teams and manages the aquaponic garden.

IMG_8647Angie Brock

Logistics and Volunteer Coordinator, We've Got Your Back [email protected]

Angie oversees all the Giving Children Hope volunteers on a daily basis. You’ll often find her in the warehouse explaining to volunteers the process of filling backpacks and sorting food. Our volunteers come from various companies, organizations or individuals who simply enjoy helping those in need. A large amount of responsibility sits on Angie's shoulders; roughly 1,300 children and their families depend on the food-filled backpacks each week! Angie has a contagious sense of humor and is a busy soccer mom outside of work.

IMG_1441 Nicole Damitio

Warehouse Associate | [email protected]

With the help of volunteers, Nicole masterfully sorts through thousands of medical supplies to prepare them for international shipment. Often Nicole is the face of Giving Children Hope as she picks up donations all over Orange County. Nicole loves witnessing the impact on the lives of the children we serve at Giving Children Hope. She has enjoyed volunteering to help those in need since a child but it’s a special experience to now get to do it for her job. Nicole loves her two kiddos and is looking forward to her soccer-mom filled weekends when the season starts!

IMG_1443Mike Cabansag

Warehouse Associate | [email protected]

Mike got his start at Giving Children Hope as an intern and has become a crucial part of the warehouse team. He works incredibly hard processing and handling each donation that the organization is blessed with. Mike says his favorite part of the job is working with such a welcoming and friendly staff. He’s thankful to work with people who don’t judge him. Mike’s talents are spread across many industries; he spends his free time working on cars and cutting hair. Mike has one son and they love going to Disneyland together.