Inside the Boys and Girls Club in Riviera Beach you’ll find three men, from different backgrounds, who share a goal.
“It’s called Father Fest, it’s a time when we celebrate and affirm father figures in the community,” Shamus Gordon said.
Gordon is the Program Director of Project FACT.
“Which stands for fathers and children together,” he said.
The program was started almost two years ago to help celebrate and mentor fathers and children living in West Palm Beach and Riviera Beach.
“No, I did not have a father figure in my life,” Christian Newsome said.
Newsome is a team coordinator and he says for him the mission is personal.
“I got in and out of things just from different influences and that’s what pushes me now because I know the dangers of what can happen,” he said.
Newsome has spent the last 6 years of his life being father figure to children in the community. Now he’s also a full time father to his 15 month old son.
“His first word was on Father’s Day and it was Dad-da,” he said.
Volunteer and dad Marlon Reed says Saturday’s Father Fest event is a time for inclusion.
“The message is that we are a community, regardless of what your background is, where you come from, what your family status is,” Reed said.
The free event will have food, games and prizes, and Gordon says they have partnered with the T. Leroy Jefferson Medical Society to offer health information and vaccinations on site.
“We will make sure that we do all we possibly can to empower fathers and father figures as well as prepare boys and young men for the responsibilities of father hood,” Gordon said.
Project FACT was recently awarded a $100,000 grant allowing them to expand their services to south Palm Beach County.
Father Fest 2021 is being held on Saturday, June 19th from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at the Max Fisher Boys and Girls Club in Riviera Beach. To register for the free event contact SGordan@bgcpbc.org.