Carl Williams is raising his son, daughter and stepson. Everything’s going great, everyday has a routine. He’s working, he’s on the verge of marriage, and he’s taking the time to care for his mother. However, life wasn’t so simple just a short time back.
Williams came to FSC thinking the organization would be a segue to better employment. He gained custody of his daughter, Kaliah, 7, and his son, Carl, Jr., 5.
Finding a job was difficult — that’s when he sought FSC’s services. When he arrived for day one of the Family Formation Program, he came to realize more was in store.
“When I came to FSC, I thought I was just getting job training,” he said. “It was nothing like I suspected. I focused more about what was in front of me, not what was ahead. It changed my view on things as a parent.”
Fast-forward, and Williams has a new job and a new love. He is goal-focused with strong initiatives to plan ahead. His engagement to Danielle Glenn is making his family whole, he says, and with her, he’s gained a stepson in 8-year-old Jaylon.
“She’s been a wonderful person in my kids’ lives,” Williams said. “It’s a beautiful thing.”
Today, Williams is doing everything to put his family first. He uses the skills and tools he learned at FSC. He’s works at General Motors in Wentzville on the assembly line building Chevrolet Colorado trucks and other models.
“I love my job,” he said. “It’s hard work, but I’m making American cars.”
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He appeared to have everything in his favor. A job. A good relationship with his kids. Child support payments paid.
Yet there were holes Rick Jamison needed to fill — mainly his relationship with his son and his views on what it takes to be a man. He had heard about FSC, but never took the initiative to seek the agency’s services. All that changed when he wanted to see his son and be a better father.
“I didn’t know what to think about Fathers’ Support Center,” he said. “I just really wanted to see my son”
A father of four and a journeyman electrician, Jamison started feeling the benefits of FSC with morning discussions and the parenting course.
“You can hear a lot of things everybody’s going through. You could say I’ve been there or I’m going through the same situation,” he said. “What I learned was patience from FSC. I grew up thinking the more women you have, the bigger man you are. FSC changed that.”
“It was a lot of little things that I did for my kids that allowed me to change,” he said.
Things like compliments and telling the children why he loved them made a huge difference in the relationships and increased their closeness.
Since completing his FSC experience, Jamison has a strong relationship with all of his children and is now regularly paying his child support. When he’s not working, his life as a single father to Dashawn, 21, Lastarr, 15, Asia, 14, and Pearce, 5, is dedicated to making memories.
“I love the fact that they’re enjoying themselves,” Jamison said.
Greg Washington didn’t really want to get into the Family Formation Program, but family court sent him to FSC after issues arose in his child support payments.
“I was struggling to understand the system,” he said. “I always had a decent job so my payments were always high, but when you don’t have a job, it’s hard.”
His building maintenance degree allowed him to obtain jobs, but keeping them was a different story. Supporting his sons and daughters became a struggle in itself. He was out of work and needed help. That’s when FSC came into his life.
“It was like a blessing in disguise because I didn’t think that program could have helped me,” Washington said.
In the program, Washington learned valuable skills and tools — things he thought he knew, but didn’t know completely. Something as simple as dressing in formal clothes, properly tying a necktie and how to approach a job interview all played a huge role.
“All those things were already in me, but when someone else sees it in you, it makes it easier for it all to come out,” Washington said. “The stuff they teach you, makes you feel accountable.”
Washington gained employment through FSC as well. He now does building maintenance for Best Western Hotels in Arnold, Missouri and is fully supporting his daughters Taysia and Keasia, both 12-years-old, his sons, Greg, 12, and Gazyn, 3, and stepson Hazier, 18. Washington is engaged to Lakeicha Burns, and once all is said and done, the seven of them will be a family.
“I’m a father in progress till the end,” he said. “I have no excuses.”