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    Parenthood is the ultimate gift and an incredible

    responsibility. Every day, fathers across our country give

    everything they have to build a better future for their family,

    asking nothing in return but their children’s love and success.

    On Father’s Day, we honor the men in our lives who have helped

    shape us for the good, and we recommit to supporting fatherhood

    in our families, in our communities, and across our Nation.

    Fathers, along with our mothers, are our first teachers,

    coaches, and advisors. They help us grow into adults, consoling

    us in times of need and celebrating with us in times of triumph.

    Strong male role models come in all forms, but they have one

    thing in common: they show up and give it their best. A father

    figure may be a biological father, or he may be a surrogate

    father who raises, mentors, or cares for another’s child. Every

    family is different, but what matters is the unconditional

    support, guidance, and love fathers and mentors give us

    throughout life.

    Today, too many children in our country grow up without

    such support and guidance. A father’s absence is felt by

    children, families, and communities in countless ways, leaving a

    hole that can have lasting effects. Their absence is also felt

    by mothers, who work overtime and double shifts, put food on the

    table, and care for children alone while trying to make ends

    meet. And it is felt in our communities, when boys grow up

    without male leaders to inspire them.

    My Administration has made supporting fathers and their

    communities a priority. Last year on Father’s Day, I announced

    the President’s Fatherhood and Mentoring Initiative, a

    nationwide effort to support organizations that foster

    responsible fatherhood and help re-engage fathers in the lives

    of their children. We have bolstered community and faith-based

    programs that provide valuable support networks for fathers.

    We are also promoting work-life balances that benefit families,

    and partnering with businesses across America to create

    opportunities for fathers and their children to spend time

    together. And military leaders are joining in our efforts to

    help families keep in touch when a dad is deployed overseas,

    so the fathers who serve to protect all our children can stay

    connected to their own.

    On Father’s Day, we celebrate the men who make a difference

    in the life of a child, and we pay tribute to all the fathers

    who have been our guiding lights. In the days ahead, we

    recommit ourselves to making fatherhood, and the support men

    need to be fathers, a priority in our Nation.


    NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the

    United States of America, in accordance with a joint resolution

    of the Congress approved April 24, 1972, as amended (36 U.S.C.

    109), do hereby proclaim June 19, 2011, as Father’s Day.

    I direct the appropriate officials of the Government to display

    the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on

    this day, and I call upon all citizens to observe this day with

    appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.


    seventeenth day of June,

    two thousand eleven, and

    United States of America

    I have hereunto set my hand this

    in the year of our Lord

    of the Independence of the

    the two hundred and thirty-fifth.


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