prevent child abuse america responds to the new yorker
meet Norland and Jayden
Norland was on the run from the law and a high school dropout when his girlfriend became pregnant.
“I was living a different type of lifestyle. The decisions I was making weren't the correct ones. They weren’t beneficial to me, those around me or, especially, to my future child.”
Norland says he didn’t know how to be a father. His own father had abandoned his family when Norland was a young boy.
His Healthy Families home visitor taught him about parenting skills, child development, and how to be a dad. Working with the program, Norland received full custody of his son Jayden to ensure that Jayden would grow up in a healthy and nurturing home.
Healthy Families also helped Norland to set and achieve personal goals. He got his GED, enrolled in college, and is now taking classes in the medical field. Perhaps, he says, he will become a doctor.
Currently, Norland works as a Healthy Families home visitor working with young parents. He wants to give back to the program that benefitted him so much.
“Healthy Families helped me every step along the way. I don’t know where I would be without the program. And, I’m proud to say I’m a great dad now, an upstanding young man, and a model to other young dads. I’m giving my son a better start in life than I ever had.”
Watch this short video on Norland and his son Jayden.