Dean Radcliffe-Lynes is on a mission to paint a very different image of black fatherhood than what your perception may have already imagined. Her recent endeavor, Daddy’s Here: When Being Present is the Only Option, a film documentary is what she describes as a celebration of fatherhood.
“What viewers will be most surprised with is that the images of black fathers not being in their children’s lives is totally opposite of the reality,” she said. “In fact, non-custodial black fathers are more involved in their children’s lives than white fathers.”
When producing the documentary, she was reminded of her seven nephews, none of who were raised by their fathers.
“I have seven nephews,” she said. “None of them were raised by their fathers. Five of them are now fathers and they are the most engaged dads you will meet. Two of them are non-custodial, but you wouldn’t know it if you based it on how often they are with their children.”
The issue of the absent black father has been an issue that tends to touch on a nerve for many blacks. Recent statistics reveal a very different image of black fatherhood as the numbers have led many to believe.
“We know the negative impact that father absence has on children, and we don’t make excuses for those men who are not in their children’s lives. What we are doing is celebrating the fathers who are present in their children’s lives, whether they are custodial or not,” said Lynes-Radcliffe. “What the statistics don’t show is that most of those children still have their fathers in their lives.”
She is currently in the fundraising phase to bring this film to your local television. Her desire is to bring screenings around the country to spark a dialogue through panel discussions.
“I want to reach fathers who are not in their children’s lives to encourage their involvement and I want to reach out to the community at large to be supportive of fathers, especially young fathers,” she said.
About the film’s producer
Dean Lynes-Radcliffe is an award winning television producer with over 30 years of experience in broadcasting. Her national credits include, Images & Realities: African-American Women, Walk A Mile In My Shoes: 90 Year Journey of the NAACP, and A Celebration of Life: Rising Above Breast Cancer, hosted by jazz artist, Nancy Wilson.
According to the Indiegogo website: “Daddy’s Here is more than a documentary. It is part of a National Community Outreach Campaign that will encourage community organizations, faith-based institutions, fraternal organizations and more, to host kitchen table discussions, community forums and town hall meetings to talk about the critical role fathers play in their children’s lives and what we as a community can/are/should be doing to assists fathers, particularly young African American fathers to be and stay connected to their children.”