Father's Day 2018
This Father's Day, we focused on honoring 5 St. Louis fathers and JLT graduates! We asked them questions about fatherhood, as well as how they've grown since completing Phase One of JLT.
What is your favorite thing about being a dad?
“My favorite thing about being a father is…. I’m picturing him (Jerry Jr.). I think my favorite thing about being a father is just watching him grow. Watching him get stronger. Watching him get smarter. I can look back to when he was first born, and he didn’t have a care in the world… and now he’s about 8 years old, and he’s getting experience with school and typical kid stuff. Just watching him transform into a young man. It’s strange because I see him in me, and I can watch myself all over again. So it’s kinda weird, but it’s also exciting at the same time.”-Jerry, Winter 2017 JLT Graduate
What does fatherhood mean to you?
“Fatherhood… A father is someone who raise you and show you right from wrong. Someone who can be there for you, good or bad. I didn’t have no father so basically that’s like my inspiration for being a father, to be there for my kids. From day one I’ve been with my kids. So basically for me, fatherhood is being around. Because it’s not about what you can get them, it’s what you can teach them.”-Darrell, Spring 2018 JLT Graduate
“I want to be a father for more than just my kids. I want to be a father figure for like a whole community. I want to be a person that for more than my kids… my kids automatically come to me, but I want to be a father to a community. The kids on the street they see me and they look up to me and I can help them with their problems they are going through. I want to be more like a community father. Take a bunch of kids from the neighborhood on trips and getting them out of the same environment. We kind of cage ourselves in so I want to explore more and do different things for the kids. A community father is how I look at it.”-Torrian, Fall 2017 JLT Graduate
What did you learn from JLT about fatherhood?
“Well, just to make sure your always in your child’s life even if you don’t have everything together financially yet, just be there to support her. Just no matter what. Never leave their side. Even if you’re not dealing with the mother, you got to be there for the child. That really stuck with me.”
Where do you want to be as a dad in the future?
“I just want to be able to do things like, buy here a car, attend all her graduations and cheerleading events and stuff like that. And hopefully basketball. Man I love my kid… I’ll cap it off with that. I love my kid. I live for her now ya know?”-Gerale, Spring 2018 JLT Graduate
What did you take away from JLT about fatherhood?
“The biggest thing I learned was how to connect with my children in different ways. Meaning like how to listen and hear them out you know, and how to find different methods of connecting with them as far as just the regular like… You know the way you grow up and you try to put that into them, but the world is changing and you have to change with the time. So that’s one of the things I connected with is being open to them and learning new things to connect with them to make their situation better as well as mine as a parent.”-Kevin, Spring 2017 JLT Graduate