Aims at 1,000 Nationwide –
Fathers & Families, Inc., a local non-profit company, today launched a Philadelphia billboard campaign aimed at building awareness of the importance of good fathers. The billboard, prominently greeting Eastbound motorists on the Schuylkill Expressway, shows a loving father embracing his smiling infant son, along with the headline, “Good Fathers Make a Difference.”
“Our message is simple, yet timely and vitally important,” said Bill McCusker, Founder & CEO of Fathers & Families, Inc. “Good fathers make a huge difference in the lives of their children. We need to recognize this, and help moms, kids, families and our communities move towards a better place.” www.fathersfamilies.com
McCusker pointed with alarm to the high percentage of children born into and living in father-absent families. “By any measure – poverty, failure in school, drug abuse, hunger, incarceration, teen pregnancy, and more – kids are better off when a loving mother and a loving father work together to raise them,” McCusker said.
McCusker quoted President Barrack Obama, who in 2008 said, “Children who grow up without a father are five times more likely to live in poverty and commit crime; nine times more likely to drop out of schools; and 20 times more likely to end up in prison.”
McCusker explained that the campaign does not dismiss the reality of single parent families. “Sure there are times when single parents, mostly moms, need to raise the kids,” said McCusker. “And many single moms do heroic work. But the model that we need to hold up for the next generation should be a two parent model, one in which dads, too, are present and play a vitally important role.”
McCusker said we are seeing a crisis of fatherlessness where over seventeen million children in the U.S. live without their father. “There is evidence galore of what happens when dads are missing from their kids’ lives,” said McCusker. “It’s not a pretty picture. Nor is it confined to any one demographic group. We all need to do a lot better.”
The Philadelphia billboard is located on the Eastbound Schuylkill Expressway near 30th Street just before the split heading towards either Center City or West/South Philadelphia. According to McCusker, the Philadelphia billboard is a step in a campaign that aims to grow to 1,000 billboards across the country.
“We need to relearn what we have known for thousands of years — that dads are important,” McCusker said. “Over the past fifty years, we have lost sight of this and we need to refocus. Our Philly campaign is part of that process.”
Fathers & Families, Inc. is classified as a public charity under IRC section 501 C (3). Its mission is to improve the lives of children, mothers, and families – and to help our communities and our country — by building awareness of the importance of fathers, by helping fathers be better fathers, and by rebuilding the institution of fatherhood over the next 50 years.