WASHINGTON (WUSA9) - Paul Winestock is excited about his new mission.
He's a contractor by day, who spends the rest of his time giving back to the community he grew up in. Most of that giving back happens in a modest location on Rhode Island Avenue in Northeast, D.C.
"Kids in the neighborhood have somewhere to go, parents have somewhere to take their younger kids, it really fills what I see as a void in the community," said Kenyan McDuffie, Ward 5 Councilmember.
New small business and center for at risk youth in NE...started by a man who wants to make sure kids don't go down the same path he did. pic.twitter.com/FXlaJJQw15— Marcella Robertson (@Marcella_Rob) August 29, 2017
Winestock created a small business and center for the youth, called 'Fun It Up." It's a place for the kids to play, be mentored and stay off the streets, all free at cost.
"I want the kids to see this as a positive place where they can actually come and have fun and feel at home and learn something from it as well," said Winestock.
It's something Winestock says he never had. He went down the wrong path when he was younger and spent 23 years in prison. He was locked up for drugs, but got a second chance after he was released. He says he came out of prison with a plan.
"My whole focus is trying to get these youth in the right direction. I didn't want to see the youth go through what I went through," he said.
Others who work with the center hope this can become a place for children to achieve their dreams.
"We want to be that resource for those children so they can take that next step and build for themselves and their community," said Ashley Judd, who works closely with the center.
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