One third of children in the U.S. live at home without their biological fathers. In turn, these children are five times more likely to live in poverty than children whose dads are fully present in their lives.
A feature length film that is currently being filmed in Northeast Ohio will explore the crucial role that dads play in their children's lives. It is documenting the journey of fathers as they seek to become better dads by attending programs sponsored by the Cuyahoga County Fatherhood Initiative
and The Center for Families and Children of Northeast Ohio
Despite these harsh statistics, some nonprofit leaders say that Cleveland, which has a very high poverty rate, is making progress towards building better fathers.
"Public perception would have you believe that fathers are a vanishing species," says Kimberly St. John-Stevenson, Communciations Officer with the Saint Luke's Foundation
, which provided funding to the Center for Families and Children in support of the film. "The Cuyahoga County Fatherhood Initiative is working to dispel that myth through a variety of programs and partners that all focus on building better fathers."
Director Marquette Williams, a Cleveland native who currently lives in Los Angeles, has created a film company called Cinema:216 with a primary focus on film production in Cleveland. "We hope all of the information that we collect through the filming of the documentary will assist in the ultimate goal of bringing more fathers and children together," said Marquette in a news release.
Source: Marquette Williams, Kimberly St. John-Stevenson
Writer: Lee Chilcote