FORT MYERS, Fla. (May 2, 2014) – In partnership with the Lee County Housing Authority, Boys & Girls Clubs of Lee County, Lee County Black History Society, Inc. and the City of Fort Myers STARS Complex, the Housing Authority of the City of Fort Myers will host its Fourth Annual Father’s Day Celebration, an initiative created to strengthen families and communities by supporting dads, on Saturday, June 14 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Clemente Park located at 3265 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard in Fort Myers.

This year’s Father’s Day Celebration will be filled with a variety of fun and entertainment for the entire family to enjoy including youth and adult basketball competitions, flag football, music, stage performances, food and drinks, various kids’ activities and more. Event attendees will also have an opportunity to receive free information from community businesses in the areas of education, health, employment, housing and many other services.

The HACFM will be combining its Father’s Day festivities and the Lee County Black History Society’s ‘Juneteenth’ celebrations into one event.

As part of President Obama’s Fatherhood and Mentoring Initiative, the HACFM’s annual Father’s Day event is a nationwide day of events encouraged by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The Fatherhood and Mentoring Initiative partners with the Administration for Children and Families, White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse, fathers, mothers, family-serving organizations and other leaders from across the country who wish to be positive role models and mentors for the children in their lives and communities.

“It is the goal of the HACFM and LCHA to encourage all fathers, especially absent fathers, to become a strong and vital part of their children’s lives,” said Marcus D. Goodson, executive director of the HACFM. “We hope to inspire and encourage our fathers to be a positive role model for their children by providing an atmosphere of love, support and entertainment during the Father’s Day weekend and for the rest of their lives. It is our belief that with a strong family unit in place, children will thrive and become an instrumental part of the communities in which they live.”

According to HUD, the majority of public-housing households with children are headed by single women who earn less than $9,000 annually. However, according to statistics drawn from communities across the country, children raised in absent-father families are more at risk for a host of negative factors, including dropping out of school. The focus on Father’s Day is meant to be a starting point—either a celebration of existing relationships or a reason to form first connections.

Federal partners of this year’s Father’s Day event include the U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Justice.

To date, nearly 200 housing authorities in 33 states will participate in Father’s Day 2014 and are partnering with other organizations including the NFL, NBA, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Legal Services Corporation and the National Fatherhood Initiative, an organization created in 1993 to raise awareness of the importance of fathers. Together, these groups are delivering a clear message: America needs dads.

According to U.S. Census data, 24 million American children live in a home without a father. Also, NFI said children in homes without a father are five times more likely to be poor and more likely to drop out of school or be incarcerated. This is why the involvement of fathers in the lives of their children is crucial.

“We are so appreciative to the local businesses that have joined us in supporting this positive initiative,” said Twaski Jackson, director of client services for the HACFM. “Every night, one-out-of-three children go to bed in a home without a father. Our goal is to help bring fathers and their children together, while connecting dads to the community resources that will help them succeed, including job training, health screenings, education, outreach and many other opportunities. By participating in this year’s event, our community’s businesses demonstrate their commitment to improving the quality of life for children and their family units.”

Sponsorships for the Fourth Annual Father’s Day Celebration are now available up to $5,000. To become an event sponsor or to provide free information on social and economic resources/services, please contact Twaski Jackson at 239-344-3251.

Currently, the HACFM serves more than 3,500 low-income families throughout the greater Fort Myers community. The HACFM provides high quality, stable and sustainable housing and related services to people in need. In addition, the staff works diligently in providing programs such as Resident Services/Family Self-Sufficiency and HOPE VI Community Supportive Services. The goal is to help families become self-sufficient, therefore strengthening the communities that use public and private resources efficiently and effectively.

The HACFM serves as a catalyst for increasing access to safe, affordable housing, and helping develop, preserve and revitalize communities through affordable rental housing. The agency is dedicated to empowering families with the means to become as self-sufficient as possible, encouraging and facilitating movement toward financial independence beyond the need for HACFM services, while recognizing the needs and limitations of the mentally and physically disabled, aged and infirmed.

For more information about the annual Father’s Day event or the HACFM, contact Twaski Jackson at 239-344-3251 or visit