Center for Fathers and Families
The Center for Fathers and Families (The Center) is a private 501(c)(3) non-profit agency with a strong history of responding to the needs of fathers and their families by offering programs and services that lead to family growth, enrichment, and empowerment. As an established centerpiece within South Sacramento communities, the Center’s goals are to re-establish and reiterate the importance of fatherhood in both the home and the community, and to promote the theme to all men that “Fatherhood is Forever and Fun.”
The Center began the process of becoming an official non-profit organization in August 1993. Matthew C. Crain, Ed D. and the original board of directors organized after several family and friends attended a certification seminar conducted by Dr. Michael O’Donnell of Abilene Christian University on behalf of the National Center for Fathering. Board members felt the need for a “local chapter” that could promote greater involvement on the part of fathers in their families. (The Center has no official association with the National Center for Fathering). The vision of the founder and the Board of Directors was to promote and provide family enrichment programs and services to fathers and their families.
The first two years were primary focused on establishing the organization’s by-laws and obtaining a 501(c) 3 non-profit status. Some of the early program and service activities included distributing educational materials at health fairs and family events held at the Laguna Town Hall and Meadowview Community Center. In addition, “building parent relationship” classes were conducted and held at local churches, community centers and hospitals in the Sacramento and Elk Grove area. Newspaper articles that focused on fatherhood were written for the Elk Grove Citizen. Finally, brochures and pamphlets were produced for distribution in doctor’s offices and/or by request.
Founder Matthew Crain, Ed D., designed most of the early materials based on his experiences as an adult education specialist, hospital chaplain, police chaplain and minister. In July of 1997, he resigned his position as Executive Director to take a pastoral position in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The following month, Richard T. Jennings, II was officially appointed as the Executive Director by the Board of Directors. He continues in that position to this day.