Pine Bluff Housing Authority recently hosted its third annual Father’s Day Initiative.
The PBHA believes encouraging responsible and caring father involvement is important and healthy.
“Caring and involved fathers are the most important and untapped resource in society today,” said Jeannie H. Epperson, PBHA executive director.
Karen Lee, PBHA resident services director, said, “Nearly every man who has a child wants to be a good father. But desire must find concrete expression. Raising a child requires sacrifice, effort, time and presence. Fathers need to value their own potential importance to a child’s well-being and take steps to strengthen their contributions and commitment to their children’s lives.”
The Father’s Day Initiative was intended to serve as just one such opportunity.
Day one of the event started with a job fair hosted at The Pines mall.
“Partnering with PBHA for this event offered a win-win situation for the housing authority, potential applicants and The Pines mall businesses,” said Scott Green, mall manager.
The job fair was open to the public, providing the opportunity for men to connect to employment resources. A total of 18 vendors were present and about 150 job-seekers participated in the event.
The day two fun day was a beautiful, sunny day that provided fathers and mentors the opportunity to engage in activities with children. Nearly 200 people participated. Throughout the event, there were inflatable jumpers and water slides, free hot dogs, hamburgers and drinks. Food for all kids under age 18 was provided by the Jacksons with Kosmic Kids.
The Pine Bluff Police and Fire departments interacted with the children and took the opportunity to engage with the community. PBHA designed games and activities. Water activities, provided by Kosmic Kids, were the favorites of the day. The Jefferson Comprehensive Care Center was on site to provide free HIV testing. Mario Snelling, PBHA’s Boy Scout Leader, taught his sons and the other boys a lesson in basketball and discipline.
The key sponsors of the Father’s Day Initiative were: The Pines mall, MK Distributors, Greater Fellowship Ministries, BRAVE, Brookshire’s, Cottonbelt Credit Union, Smart Chevrolet, McKissic Law Firm, Terry’s Home Cooking, Kosmic Kids and Henson-Holcomb Mortuary.