100 Black Men of Greater Kansas City to host 3rd annual "Celebration of Fathers"

Contact: Chris Jones Phone: (816) 799-7554 10:30 a.m. [CST], June 11, 2012

KANSAS CITY MO – The 100 Black Men of Greater Kansas City (100 BMGKC) is proud to announce its third annual “Celebration of Fathers: Father of the Year” event, scheduled for Sunday, July 1, 2012, from 4:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. at the Bruce R. Watkins Cultural Heritage Center (3700 Blue Parkway Kansas City, MO 64130).

The annual event, launched in 2010, began as collaboration among the 100 BMGKC, Kansas City’s “Dedicated Dads” (Healthy Start) initiative, and Congressman Emmanuel Cleaver. The purpose: to celebrate the success of many fathers and father figures within the African-American community – focusing on efforts to create lasting impressions in our children’s lives. Father of the Year candidates are selected through a nomination process, with nominators submitting a brief essay on the qualities of the candidate. The nomination form can be downloaded from the organization’s website (http://100blackmenkc.org/father2012/).

“Our society is continually bombarded with messaging on the ‘crisis’ of absent fathers within the African-American community,” said Brian Foster, president of the chapter. “As an organization comprised of African-American men, we feel it is imperative that, by showcasing the men who are providing time and treasure to children – whether they be the biological father, a stepfather, or any kind of father figure – we can positively impact the perception that Black men are largely absent as mentors and role models. It’s just not true; many Black fathers embrace the role.”

Christopher Jones, the 2010 Father of the Year recipient – and now a member of the 100 BMGKC in charge of the event – added, “Perhaps a celebration like this could even provide inspiration to those who aren’t engaged with their children to begin doing so.”

Nominations must be received by no later than Monday, June 25, 2012. The event is free of charge, and open to the public. A catered networking/reception will be held before the ceremony with performances by Tha Band, saxophonist Chris Nixon, and national Gospel recording artist Eric Ashby. In addition, the event will also be simulcast online via ustream: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/father-of-the-year

The 100 Black Men of Greater Kansas City is devoted to improving the quality of life for African-Americans, particularly young males in the Kansas City metropolitan area, through programs focusing on mentoring, education, health & wellness and economic empowerment.

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