FSU grad grew from foster care to business owner, mentor

“I wanted to give back”

A Fayetteville State University graduate has gone from years in the foster care system to mentoring other children at the same group home that housed him.

Prince Pickney said he was 14 when he was sent to the Falcon Children’s Home after being abused at the hands of a parent who had drug addiction and mental health issues.

“There was some child abuse involved. Not all the time, but when you’re bipolar and drugs mix, that stuff is going to happen,” he said.

The children’s home in Falcon offers transitional living for older teens and family services for foster care and adoption.

Pickney, now 28, said he lived there until he was 20. When he graduated from FSU in 2018, he went back to the children’s home to become a mentor to kids in the same situation he once was.

“I came back to Falcon as a house parent and I’ve been working here ever since,” he said. “I wanted to give back and help some of the kids here.”

That same year, Pickney also launched his online clothing store, J Heir Designs, which highlights Black culture and nostalgia.

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