Tue. Jul 23rd, 2024
When Augustine started our Panim El Panim Life-Skills Program, he had just returned home from a 9 year incarceration for drug related offenses. After 7 years in prison, Augustine learned that he had a 7 year old. He has said that once he saw Justin,  Augustine made a commitment to be the best father he could be. When he had served his  time, Augustine was given custody of his son and went about building a life. He got a part time job and made sure his son attended school and worked hard to get good grades. When we met Augustine, his work schedule was making it difficult for him to pick up Justin after school and the program made arrangements for Justine to come to the church where panim was being offered and to do his homework as the room was being prepared for the program allowing Augustine to finish work,  arrive on time and participate in the program as Justin sat at another table, headphones on, doing his schoolwork. Justine became an honorary member of the Graduating class. 
spring 2015 – Panim El Panim – graduation 
When this graduation picture was taken, Augustine was on his way to the event from work. His son Justin is in the front row with Dennis Barton, our peer facilitator standing behind him.  Augustine arrived shortly after this picture was taken and shared his testimony at the conclusion of the graduation program. 
With Justine looking on, Augustine talked about how Panim el Panim felt like a family. He said “before, I wouldn’t trust anyone to watch my son, now I trust all of you!” 
Augustine is now working with the City of New York for the Department of General Services. His position has moved from part time to full time. Father and son are doing very well.


Thank you for helping us to help our spring 2016 participants experience the sense of family that we all so deeply need in our lives. 


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