Photo of father with his son on his shoulders

Reflections of a Man, Father’s Day 2014

By: Elma Z. Goodwin, Management and Program Analyst, ACF Region VI

“Reflections of a Man” was the theme of this year’s third annual reconnecting fathers event sponsored by the Dallas County Health and Human Services Housing Agency’s Fatherhood Initiative.  The event drew men of varying ages, mothers, children, and families who took advantage of the program, arts and crafts for the children, and refreshments.  Region VI, represented by the Immediate Office of the Regional Administrator and Child Support Enforcement Program, was among other vendors providing information and resources available in their communities. 

The keynote speaker was an assistant principal from a local high school who shared his thoughts on what makes a good, strong man.  A man should be a man of faith, take care of his family, have honorable friends, take care of finances, and leave a legacy.  Characteristics he saw in his own father. It was a good reminder that it is hard to be what you cannot see—role modeling is important.

A father participating in the Dallas housing program had this to say.  Fatherhood is about being there; it is about doing what is right for the kids, and not giving up—willing to go through it and not around it.  With his wife and three kids nearby, he thanked the housing program for all its support.  He went on to say that through this caring support, in a year, his wife will be receiving her Doctor of Dentistry degree.  A powerful testimony and awesome success story!

Photo of LaMonica Wooten, Deanna Gilmore, and Elma Goodwin at Father's Day eventIn-person leadership support of the event was Leon R. McCowan, Regional Administrator, Dept. of Health and Human Services and Zachary Thompson, Director, Dallas County Health & Human Services. 

From the affirmations, activities, and energy displayed, I believe it is safe to say that the mission was accomplished:  to boldly voice the importance of fathers, provide resources, and strengthen the fathers’ bond with their children.

Until next year…