On Wednesday afternoon, the Teen Family Center held an open house to unveil seven posters featuring local teen-age fathers and their children.
They're called the "Dads are Dynamite" series.
"We are going to hang them in the Center to make it more dad friendly and show other new dads these good examples," said Jesuit volunteer Christina Armelin, who coordinated the poster project. The messages of the posters include "Fathers can make a difference," "Fatherhood is my favorite hobby" and "There is a world of opportunity in being a father."
The seven fathers featured on the posters are Tony Pearce, David Milton, Corey Cole, Anthony Proud, Daniel Brown, Randy Edenshaw and Andrew Fawcett.
The Teen Family Center is located within Zach Gordon Youth Center downtown at 3967 Whittier Street. It is co-sponsored by Zach Gordon and Healthy Families, a program of Catholic Community Service. Its mission is to act as a welcoming, supportive and safe drop-in spot for pregnant and parenting teens, said Armelin, who has worked there since August. It provides parenting resources and community referrals. "We give them resources for housing and child support," she said.
Capital Copy donated the printing. Other donations came from Valley Paint, Ellen Northup and Lyle's Custom Framing. Expertise for creating the posters was furnished by Jacalyn Greene, owner of Smiles Across The Miles, a local photography studio. Greene was approached about the project by Bridget Easaw, head of the Teen Family Center.
"We just got on a mission, and it turned out to be one of the best things I ever did," Greene said. "I met all the dads, and they were good kids, and the kids' kids were good, too, during the shoot, and the posters turned out awesomely."
Greene enjoyed participating because the dads were "all sharp kids who need recognition." In addition, she said, "I was a teenage parent - although my kids is going to be six foot five inches."
Greene's expenses were paid by the Center, but she donated her time, she said. She plans to work with the center again creating posters of teen moms.
Ann Chandonnet can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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