Sisters of Charity Foundation’s Commitment to Fatherhood
The Sisters of Charity Foundation began in its work in supporting low income fathers in 1998 following extensive research by experts in the field. The research showed that low income fathers were unable to provide for their children and had an array of ongoing issues that were barriers to their future success. Since 1998, the Foundation has invested more than $21.5 million dollars in support of fatherhood programs throughout South Carolina. Because of this investment, fathers can now access services in all 46 South Carolina Counties. The programs help men receive necessary job training, further their education or complete their GED, receive legal assistance to be able to navigate the family court system, and build a stronger relationship with their children and the mother of their children.
Through the Foundation’s work, a program called Alternatives to Incarceration was launched in 2006. This program allows family court judges to court order men to fatherhood programs as an alternative to putting them in jail for not paying their child support. As a result of this effort, over $ 7 million has been saved by keeping hundreds of men out of jail while improving their job skills and helping them earn a livable wage and then to pay child support. It is estimated that over $2.3 has now been collected in child support payments from these men who are/were in the Alternatives to Incarceration Program. These are the same men that would have been in jail and costing the state of South Carolina a lot of money.
In 2003, the Sisters of Charity Foundation created the South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families. The Center serves as the operational arm for fatherhood programs across the state. Through the Center and efforts across South Carolina, over 12,000 men have benefited from fatherhood programs and services. Also, more than 21,000 children have been positively impacted because the fathers are more able to support their needs.
The Foundation continues to provide financial support to the Center for Fathers on an annual basis. Anyone wanting more information on fatherhood or fatherhood programs should contact the SC Center for Fathers and Families at 803-227-8800. For more information, visit South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families.