(195614)

There are many myths about Black fathers in American society but one special Los Angeles-area program is designed to honor fathers of all kinds.

The program, called the Honoring Unsung Fathers (HUF) Awards, was created by Judge Mablean Ephriam and marks its 14th anniversary this year. The event will be held June 19 at noon at the Hilton Hotel, 701 W. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach. The deadline to nominate a father in one of five categories is May 20.

Judge Mablean believes that the positive interaction between a supportive and caring father and his offspring is critical to nurturing a child’s inner spirit. Each year the goal of the awards program is to identify and recognize fathers who play a vital role in the development of their children and to make father’s day as heart felt as mother’s day has become.

HUF awards recognize dads in five categories—Solo Warrior—the father who never married his child’s mother, who is also the primary custodial parent; the Love Cares father (the married dad living in the home); the Fatherhood Forever dad—the divorced father, who divorced the mother, not the children; the Village Dad (a non-biological father who stepped into the shoes of father; and the Living Legacy—the elderly father who is a role model for other fathers.

The fathers can be nominated by their children, wives, ex-wives, parents, siblings or other relatives, friends coworkers as well as others who know and admire their great qualities.

In addition, Judge Mablean annually presents a Founder’s Award to a father, and the Board of Directors also selects a father to receive an award.

All nominees must be current with child support payments have no history of child support arrears, domestic violence, child abuse or sexual assaults.

In addition to honoring fathers, the event will also award a number of scholarships including to high school seniors; those who temporarily delayed college education due to financial considerations; individuals pursing a career in nursing; those in the nursing program at St. Francis Medical Center will be eligible to apply for the Bernice Jones Nursing Scholarship; the Howard University Scholarship will be award to a high school student planning to attend Howard in the fall; and the Thomas Jefferson High School Class of 1967 Scholarship will be awarded to a student who is currently a graduating at Jefferson.

May 20 is the deadline to apply for the scholarships, and interested individuals should contact www.hufawards.com.