While working in the Atlanta Public Schools for almost a decade, David Manuel became painfully aware of the lack of male parental guidance for inner-city children and it was not based on color, culture, or socio-economic level. The father, arts advocate and community activist authored and self-published the highly celebrated book ‘I Am A Father, Celebrating African-American Fathers’ in 2007. Highlighting the rarely seen truths in the media, regarding a very up close and personal look at black fatherhood and the relationships with their children, the book is both inspirational and educational. “You constantly hear that Black men abandon their family; they don’t pay child support, they are abusive or are in jail. Although some of this is true, I want to celebrate the fathers for their loving and powerful relationships.”
Fast-forward to 2013, David hosted a quarterly forum with an amazingly powerful panel of community leaders and key influencers called the I AM Series: Faith, Fatherhood, and Family. Never tiring, he has answered the call to “Strengthen Families One Mile at a Time” with the annual I AM A Father 5K. This 5K is not only strengthening families but is a catalyst uniting community male-focused organizations.
The proceeds from the 5k will benefit organizations which have structured programs for developing youth with a focus on strengthening the family unit from the fatherhood perspective. Each year we select two to four organizations per city to support. In 2017 we selected, Let Us Make Man and the Leadership Academy of the DeKalb County Chapter of the 100 Black Men of America for the Atlanta, Georgia 5K. Then we selected two more organizations for the Birmingham, Alabama 5K. As we grow more with additional cities we will always select at least two organizations per city. Please join us on this visionn.
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