Since Father’s Day is just around the corner, I’d like to take a moment to appreciate all the great dads out there and thank them for everything they do.  Being a parent is tough; there’s no doubt about it. But, being a single dad…that’s no piece of cake.  Statistically, of single-parent families, there is only 19 percent that are dads.  But, that 19 percent are unsung heroes.  I didn’t truly know the struggle until I had a front-row seat to it.  My partner raised three beautiful children on his own – all while starting and maintaining a business.  He gave up so much to ‘do it all’.  His stories of long days and even longer nights of self-sacrifice often leave me crying and smiling all at the same time.  I see this same battle between hardship and happiness in our First Story families too.  We have 7 single dads working hard and juggling the balance of work and family life.  One of those dads, Nathaniel, will be moving in to his First Story home later this year. 

I had the privilege of spending time with Nathaniel, who is eager to move into his new home in August.  When I asked him about his journey as a single-parent, he echoed sentiments I have heard from other single dads: “The struggle to find time with my son and still balance time for work and other things is very difficult but when I see him healthy and happy and winning at school and sports I get this feeling that we are headed in the right direction and that brings me a great amount of joy”.

Nathaniel and his 11-year-old son, Connor, are one of three families receiving a home in the McKenzie Meadows subdivision.  Nathaniel works at Deschutes Brewery and is excited to have a permanent home in the Central Oregon community.  The father and son who are passionate about Disc golf will be able to walk to one of their favorite courses from their new First Story home!

This Father’s Day we salute all dads, especially our First Story single dads, who grind it out every day to make life happen for their children.  You make us #HomeProud!