Help Delton get a new start in life

Jeff and Alicia Odell are asking our friends and family to help a man whom we have gotten to know very well over the past couple of years.  His name is Delton and he has been a very hard working yard guy / laborer for us.  The picture here is from a happy day recently where the judge OK’d a payment plan for his outstanding court fines.  More on that below.

Delton is 31 years old, married and is being a great stepdad to his stepson Tyler.   He hasn’t had a driver’s license due to outstanding court costs/fines from 10 years ago (transporting marijuana and other stupid things that young men do). He has been dependent on his wife to drive him places.  

Sadly, Delton’s wife recently cheated on him and they are now separated.  It is very unlikely that they will reconcile.  He is staying with a friend for now but has to move out within a few weeks.   No car, no one to drive him, no steady employment (he lives in rural Mathews Co. with very few job opportunities), and no health insurance.

 To help him Alicia and I have recently done the following:

·      Paid several thousand to partially pay off old court fines and interest.

·      Worked with the court to set him up on a payment plan for the remainder (he does yard work for us and we write a check straight to the court).

·      Bought him a bicycle to get exercise (he’s 300 lbs)

·      He “wants God back in my life again” so I arranged for him to get a ride to a church he wants to start attending again.

·      Helping him get his learners permit (he last held a license 10+ years ago as unpaid court fines blocked his driving privileges.)

·      Equipped him with a laptop and wifi to do job searches

·      His clothes were ragged and stained so I arranged for a donation of shirts and pants from a manufacturer of work clothes.

I am also working with him on job seeking & interviewing skills, coaching him on healthier eating (we help him purchase healthier foods), and getting him to sign up for a free quit smoking program available through the state. 

We’re asking for contributions for the following:

·      Move him to Richmond where jobs are available, so first month’s rent and security deposit. $1,000.

·      A dependable used car in the $3000-$4000 range

·      Anticipated car maintenance & repairs $500 over the next year.

·      DMV fees / uninsured motorist fee $500.

·      I will manage the money tightly and will NOT give it to him; I will only pay directly to the seller/landlord/ service provider.  

·      If we exceed our goal, I will maintain an emergency fund. 

·      He wants to be a chef so if we really blow past the goal, I will help him enroll in a culinary certificate program at an appropriate time.

We’re confident he will find work as he’s very motivated to work and enjoys it.  He never calls asking for money – only for any kind of work he can do.  He wants to build a good life with a faithful wife and children of his own.  Without such help, he’s at high risk of back-sliding to an even worse place in life.   

A major reason we’re doing this is also for his stepson Tyler, who hugs Delton and calls him “Dad”.  Tyler’s biological father is not involved and I’ve personally seen Delton involved in many activities with Tyler (fishing, scouting, etc.).  Delton says he wants to be able to see Tyler as often as possible.  So you’d really be helping two people.

A special thanks to Timur, Stephen, Waller and Kim who have provided Delton with enough yard work recently to buy groceries for a month.
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Jeff Odell 
Richmond, VA
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