Parenting Place schedules movie to help fathers

By Nicole Guttermuth, Courier Staff

EASLEY — According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 24 million children in America — one out of three — live in homes where the biological father is absent. Some even suggest that nearly all of the social issues facing America today can be linked to the absence of a father in the home.

Joey Medoro of The Parenting Place: A Family Resource Center is working to change and positively impact these statistics in Pickens County through the “Fathers 2 Dads” program he started in January 2013.

Medoro has collaborated with Arial Baptist Church in Easley to host a men’s event this Saturday.

The free Courageous movie event begins at 5 p.m. with a variety of finger foods and refreshments, followed by a devotional time at 5:45 p.m. and then the screening of Courageous will start at 6 p.m.

Courageous is a faith-based film about fatherhood. Medoro says it is the best film depiction of fatherhood he has ever seen.

“Courageous challenges dads to step up to the plate. It encourages men to take an active role as dads,” he said. “Instead of just being fathers who bring home a paycheck, dads need to take time to do things with their children, and this movie gives great examples of why this is so important.”

This is Medoro’s mission at The Parenting Place: to provide fathers with the resources, training, opportunities, and support to become not just better fathers, but better “dads,” actively involved in their children’s lives.

More and more data is showing that dads play a paramount role in the lives of their children.

A recent study on parent-infant attachment found that fathers who were affectionate, spent time with their children, and overall had a positive attitude were more likely to have securely attached infants.

Another survey of more than 20,000 parents found that when fathers are involved in their children’s education, including attending school meetings and volunteering at school, children were more likely to get As, enjoy school and participate in extracurricular activities and less likely to have repeated a grade.

Medoro said that the event isn’t just for fathers; it is an event for all men — men who may want to be fathers someday, grandfathers, and any man in the community who has an interest in making a difference where he lives.

“The Courageous event is about showing and educating fathers about how important the roles are that they play in the lives of their children,” he said. “All of the little things really count and make a lasting impact and a difference.”

Arial Baptist Church has been trying to get a men’s group started for quite some time. Following the Courageous event, kicking off at the beginning of October, Medoro is going to be leading a men’s Bible study that builds on the themes from the film.

Medoro is passionate about working with men and educating them about the pivotal role they play as fathers and dads.

“I hope to help fathers think ‘I want to be the best dad I can be,’” said Medoro. “Courageous is a Christian faith-based movie. It really makes dads think about creating a positive home environment for their children and being a positive and active part of their lives.”

Arial Baptist Church is located at 618 Rice Road in Easley. Any man interested in attending the Courageous movie event is welcome. Those interested in participating in the October Bible study based on the film can sign up and get more information at Saturday evening’s event.

Dads play such an important role in the lives of their children in so many different ways. As a dad and as a young man who grew up without a strong father figure in his life, Medoro is on a mission to support dads in Pickens County and to help strengthen families in his community.

For more information on the Fathers 2 Dads program, or any other parent resources, contact Medoro at The Parenting Place, located at 1899 Gentry Memorial Highway in Easley, or by calling (864) 898-5583.