Now there's a program in Utah that's helping fathers step up to the challenge. It’s called Fathers & Families Coalition of Utah. It’s a non-profit started by Frank Bedolla that helps single dads navigate the court system, budget for child support and provides parenting training.
Bedolla said it’s filling a big need in Utah. “There are about 22 states that actually have fatherhood initiatives from local to state government. Utah doesn't have any what so ever,” he said.
Travis Vallejo was one of those single dads who needed some guidance. He faced being a single dad early. Right after his twin girls were born he and his girlfriend broke up.
“I went from everybody in the home together to scatter like ‘oh goodness I’m visiting my children now’,” Vallejo said.
Juggling being a new dad with working out custody was overwhelming. “It was mentally exhausting and I felt like I had no resources to help me out,” he said.
Now back with his children's mother, Vallejo said the program tips and tools helped him during that scary time.
“It seemed like anytime I had stress about an issue [Bedolla] helped resolve it and give me a sense of direction,” he said.
And being raised by a single mom, it was important for Vallejo to step up. “It gives you that special feeling inside that I grew up without a father but I’m going to be the best father ever,” he said.
For more information on Fathers & Families Coalition of Utah, click here.