Fathers Incorporated Activates Million Fathers March at M. Agnes Jones and 70 other cities impacting over 400k students
Fathers Incorporated (FI), activates its annual Million Fathers March (MFM) back-to-school father engagement on Friday, September 27th. The launch event will take place at M. Agnes Jones Elementary in Atlanta with help from the Atlanta Gladiators’ hockey team mascot, Maximus The Lion. The event will commence from 7 a.m. – 8 a.m. at the school located at 1040 Fair St SW, Atlanta, GA 30314.
This also marks the day for all schools to participate across the country with over 70 cities participating including Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, and Memphis. Kenneth Braswell, CEO of Fathers Incorporated shares, “We have an anticipated Campaign Impact of over 62,755 dads and over 426,884 students participating.” School districts can still sign up by visiting the website.
The Million Fathers March (MFM) is an opportunity for men to show their commitment to the educational lives of their children throughout the school year. Since the march began in 2004, fathers and other significant male caregivers across the United States and around the world have gathered to accompany their children to their first or designated day of the new school year. Each annual MFM marks the beginning of a year-long commitment by men to their children’s educational success.
Organizations and schools are encouraged to engage in activities that support the theme, “Real Dads Read (RDR).” Dads, uncles, coaches, mentors, clergy and men’s groups are encouraged to engage in literacy activities for the day. Currently, RDR is FI’s flagship program that has 80+ libraries in barbershops and schools across metro-Atlanta and Columbus, GA and will expand nationally in 2020. This day also marks the launch of the inaugural “Real Dads Read” book club with M. Agnes Jones as the pilot location.
“Reading is a fundamental skill and a child’s ability to read proficiently by third grade is the most significant predictor of his or her school success, high school completion, and future economic stability,” says Braswell, who was crowned to continue in the legacy of the Million Fathers March Founder, Phillip Jackson, a Chicagoan and stalwart city-government official who held numerous executive roles.
Braswell continues, “However, approximately 80% of low-income children will not achieve this crucial milestone. RDR attempts to change this outcome by engaging barbershops, schools and other educational entities to encourage fathers to read to their children. Reading to children is also a clear and beneficial way for fathers to spend quality time with their children.”
By design, the MFM is a community-driven event inclusive of foster fathers, stepfathers, uncles, cousins, big brothers, significant male caregivers, family friends, and other male role models. Additionally, representatives from such entities as public and private schools, community-based organizations, government agencies, local businesses and faith-based institutions along with elected officials are also asked to join in and support the march.