Lahmad was in a jam. Responsible for two boys ages 1 and 3, his job came to an end when childcare options ended due to the pandemic. He was able to pay December rent but knew he had to have help after that. For the first time, he sought assistance, searching online for a place in the area that would allow him and the children to remain together.
Raleigh Rescue Mission welcomed them into the New Life Plan just a few days before Christmas.
In only a few short months, Lahmad and the kids have found the stability they need to move forward with a sound plan for their future. The children have acclimated well to the on-site daycare in the Children’s Development Center, and Lahmad’s vocational training included forklift and drone classes. He’s become forklift certified, and drone certification is next. A graduate of the Mission’s most recent Jobs for Life course, Lahmad learned about the importance of networking, and with former job experience and new connections, he landed a sustainable full-time job. Once he accumulates enough savings, the next steps in Lahmad’s plan are to secure his own transportation and move his family into an apartment.
“I’m back at work now, and everything’s going according to plan,” says Lahmad. “The entire Mission staff has supported us, from the CEO to my Client Support Specialist to the Chef. I learned so much from my vocational training supervisor, Kenny. And everybody at the Children’s Center is excellent, wonderful. It’s like they’ve adopted my children as their children, and I have their backing. Their encouragement is a big reason for sticking with the program at Raleigh Rescue.”
What does the future hold for Lahmad and the boys? Lahmad explains it’s something he thinks about every day. “Right now, I’m just trying to get myself stable again. Future-wise, I just want to be sure the kids are healthy and safe. I’m so much about them knowing who they are, being able to express themselves, love the skin they’re in as they grow up. Of course we want to co-exist and love each other, but I want them to be individuals too, no stigmas or stereotypes.”
Lahmad gives the boys some space to be themselves as they nimbly climb, slide and run at Moore Square. “This right here is my life,” reflects Lahmad as he watches them carefully. “They mean everything to me. Fatherhood is tough, but it’s beautiful. I’ve come to realize that the biggest change I can make for them is to change myself, better myself, and instill that in them.”