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Meet Dante Harmon of Dagape Mentoring in Lawrenceville-Suwanee

Today we’d like to introduce you to Dante Harmon.

Dante, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I am the product of a single mother household who raised four children, three boys and one girl. I came from a very strict and religious background, and it kept me out of the streets but yet naive to life’s circumstances. As a multi-instrumentalist and having my first recording deal in my early twenties, I balanced the art of music and eventually graduating with my associate’s degree in business software technology and my bachelor’s of science degree in Theology & Counseling. All of this was accomplished while during the time married, with three kids, a full-time job, and working as a musician for a Pastor Emeritus Jasper Williams Jr. And it was under his tutelage and indirect but direct mentoring that my life changed. His teachings and wisdom altered my life in a major way.

Growing up, outside of seeing my grandfather and uncles providing for their families, I had no example of how to be an effective father except indirectly through men I admired. As time would progress, I ended up in education for over 15 years and began mentoring youth in Gwinnett county. Teaching life skills, public speaking, teaching parents, and developing my love for mentoring. I begin Dagapé mentoring after a young lady wrote to tell me after a talk I did she no longer wanted to cut herself. It changed me, and now we serve over 50-60 youth in Gwinnett county to produce great citizens and teaching life skills to make them better individuals.

Has it been a smooth road?
It was not smooth at all. I lost my grandmother, who I was very close to in my early twenties. I lost my cousin Dradine to a fatal car accident some years later, but it was a rough ride. And my personal relationship suffered as well, and like most roads, a bumpy ride with some rough patches.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Dagape Mentoring – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of and what sets you apart from others.
Dagape Mentoring Inc. is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization based in Lawrenceville, GA. The company is actively involved in helping people who are socially, economically, emotionally, and physically challenged to find a balance and become better individuals in society. We understand that that young people want responsibility and leadership roles – young people want to learn, connect, and experience. I am the CEO and executive director serving to make our kids better by use of STEAM, life skills, the arts, and mentoring.

What sets us apart from most organizations is that we do not allow our parents to sit idly as we do the work to better their children. We serve the parents as well. We survey them and seek to intentionally provide them with services, professionals and teachings that serve them as well.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I love the diversity in the city of Atlanta. We have so much rich culture and black history. What I dislike is the racial divides that still exist because of skin color. As a black man who is serving his community, it’s almost taboo to be successful and own a business and give back to the underserved, and these stories aren’t told daily. All of my children are in college and doing very well for themselves. We have to change the narrative to how we paint images of black men in our culture.

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Image Credit:
Sheria Bess photography
Dante Harmon photos

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