This year, my MVP Foundation has partnered with former NBA star, family activist, and author of, Fatherhood: Rising to the Ultimate Challenge, native Tulsan Etan Thomas, to present the Fatherhood Weekend April 5-7, 2013 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
We are excited to have Etan headline our MVP Fatherhood Weekend because according to the latest U.S. Census Bureau report nearly 70 percent of Black children live in fatherless homes. Lacking the presence of a strong, positive Black male in their lives, to many young Black men fall into traps of street culture, violence, drug use, misogyny, criminal behavior, and the unrealistic belief in professional athletics as the sole opportunity for acceptable social and economic advancement. For example, right here in Tulsa only about 50% Black males graduate high school and crimes involving Black males continues to escalate. So, the purpose of the MVP Fatherhood Weekend is:
- Bringing together local funders of fatherhood initiatives with local fatherhood programs that work within Northeastern Oklahoma;
- Providing networking opportunity for fatherhood practitioners and stakeholders (parents, teachers, etc);
- Providing information, inspiration, and empowerment for Black males and families currently dealing with issues of fatherhood and manhood from national leaders and celebrities;
- Connecting resources and programming to Black males and families in need.
In addition to Etan, we have also partnered with local schools and some of the largest Black churches in Tulsa (including host Pastor Ray Owens and Metropolitan Baptist Church) and other organizations to have their Black men and youth attend our activities.
In closing, The MVP Foundation was founded with a mission to create programming that raises money and awareness to benefit Tulsa inner-city youth. As a tax-deductible, donor-advised fund through the Tulsa Community Foundation, the MVP Foundation has served more than 700 young people, and raised more than $125,000 for local charities and initiatives focused on inner-city youth. If you are interested in becoming a sponsor or having a booth for your organization at the event, please contact Melody Tangyunyong, Event Coordinator at 918.574.8765 or