September 24, 2007
ATLANTA (GA) – After holding a series of six Fatherhood Summits in which the Office of Child Support Services (OCSS) and the Department of Technical Adult Education (DTAE) invited Georgia residents to learn about the services offered through the Fatherhood Program, OCSS is pleased to announce that it has increased the number of Fatherhood participants who have obtained employment by eleven percent. This gives the program an 82 percent employment rate compared to last years 71 percent employment rate. Additionally, Fatherhood Program participant’s families received nearly $12 million in child support payments during fiscal year 2007.
“This program is particularly important because it addresses the daily employment barriers which prevent non custodial parents from remaining current with their child support payments,” says OCSS Acting Director Keith Horton. “Addressing those barriers enables us to equip our customers with the skills necessary to break down those barriers and strengthen their families.”
Over the past decade, OCSS has been working towards increasing the amount of parents who remain current on child support; through this effort, the Fatherhood Program was created. The Fatherhood Program is used to help non-custodial parents who lack the economic capacity to make timely payments due to employment barriers. Some of the barriers that non custodial parents are facing are lack of a high school diploma or GED, no driver’s license or transportation, alcohol and substance abuse, criminal records, and mental health issues. The program works with non custodial parents who are willing, yet unable to pay their support regularly. The Fatherhood Program generally takes three to six months to complete and serves both fathers and mothers who are non-custodial parents. The participants are required to work at least 20 hours per week while enrolled in the program and pay child support. Upon completion of the program, participants receive assistance in obtaining full-time employment at a livable wage. Georgia’s Fatherhood Program is the largest state-operated fatherhood program in the country.
Those interested in finding out more information about the Georgia Fatherhood Services Program, contact your local Child Support Services office or see www.ocss.dhr.georgia.gov. Applications to the program may be made online.
For information, contact: