Mecklenburg County Program Helps Dads on Little one Help

CHARLOTTE, NC – Being a home father was something Rajuhon Jones never thought he would.

“It’s unique to go from 70 hours a week and never see your kids until you see your kids every day now,” he says.

Long hours mean he missed a lot at home. He spent nearly 20 years in construction before being laid off, and soon he began struggling to pay his child support.

“I missed baseball,” says Jones. “I missed your training … a lot of things that you take for granted. You can’t take your time back.”

He says his spouse has taken control of the finances. Then a unique opportunity presented itself to him.

“My child support advisor, he sent me a letter and he had a brochure that had paternity,” says Jones. “He said they would contact these guys and they gave me the opportunity to call them.”

That call led him to Kelly Little, who introduced the Mecklenburg Empowering Fathers Program to Jones.

“It’s an amazing experience and a lot of the men come to the table with a lot of great skills, but they don’t have a lot of support,” says Little. “They don’t understand how to deal with some of the systems and institutions they may face.”

The county program offers staff development training, career fairs, and other tools to help fathers currently paying child support.

“We say program, but it’s really about changing life. So this creates an institution that gives them the resources to navigate in any situation, ”says Little. “If they can’t get a place at the table, they know how to build a table to sit at.”

Jones is now in the fast lane to publish a book. The program connected him to a six month course for all the resources he needed.

He is also on his way to finding the perfect job that will allow him to continue being at home with his children.

“I think I’m home with my kids. I figured out for myself that this is a season where I have to learn a new career, a new craft,” says Jones.

It’s one way Jones hasn’t seen each other in, but excited about what’s next and helping others along the way.

“I plan to be in the program while they keep me so I can help someone else,” he says.

Jones is also in the process of getting his life and health insurance license and working to become a motivational speaker.

This program is available to people who are currently receiving child benefit. If you have any questions about the program, you can call this number at 704-340-1875.

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