Father Absence

What is Father Absence and Why it Matters?

The absence of a father is the single most significant predictor of developmental problems in a child’s life. The social and financial impact of father absence in our community is immeasurable.

According to the National Fatherhood Initiative, “There is a ‘father factor’ in nearly all of the social issues facing America today.”

Conclusive research data continues to confirm the effects of father absence on poverty, maternal and child health, incarceration, crime, teen pregnancy, child abuse, drug and alcohol abuse, education, and childhood obesity. The staff and volunteers at The City Mission see the effects every day in both the adults and children we serve.


Where's Papa? A Symposium on Father Absence

Thank you to everyone who attended the symposium on Wednesday. April 18, 2012 at The City Mission or online.

If you would like to continue the conversation on Twitter, the hashtag for the symposium is #wherespapa.

David Stoop, PhDOur presenter for the symposium was David Stoop, Ph.D, a clinical psychologist and the director of the Center for Family Therapy who has studied the impact of father absence and what be done about it.

He is also the author of 25 books including  Making Peace with Your Father: Understanding the Role Your Father has Played in your Life - Past to Present, Forgiving Our Parents, Forgiving Ourselves: Healing Adult Children of Dysfunctional Families, and The Complete Parenting Book.

We will post more information and resources on this topic in the future, including Debt Cancelling workshops.


The webinar contains most of the content from the symposium.

View Father Absence webinar


Resources for Fathering Issues

Websites Dr. Stoop shared in the symposium for statistics or other information include:


National Fatherhood Initiative World Congress of Families
Statistics of Fatherhood Involvement - PCC of Wichita Dad The Family Shepherd
Dads4Kids (Statisitcis of a Fatherless America) Dad University
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Fathering
Department of Health and Human Services  Fatherhood by Rose Publishing  (book)


Healthy Fathering Collaborative of Greater Cleveland Cuyahoga County Fatherhood Initiative



Where Are the Dads? Treating Richmond's Fatherless Epidemic (Christianity Today)

Fixing our fatherless culture is the mission of upcoming symposium (Plain Dealer)



Request information about resources, future events and discussions

If you are interested in receiving information and invitations about Father Absence, please complete the form below.

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Debt Cancelling Workshop

You've heard Dr. Stoop talk about our free Debt Cancelling workshops during the symposium. Here is your opportunity to attend.

Scheduled sessions (must attend both sessions) are held at Laura's Home:

  • Fri, July 13 (6 pm - 9 pm) and Sat., July 14 (9 am - 10:30 am)  
  • Fri., Aug. 10 (6 pm - 9 pm) and Sat., Aug.11 (9 am - 10:30 am)

Registration is required.
Please email Neb Kost at nkost@thecitymission.org.



Media Coverage of Symposium


"Absentee Dads"

Harry Boomer, 19 Action News, 4/18/12

"Cleveland City Mission holding Father Absence Symposium" 

Michael Baldwin, newsnet5.com, 4/18/12

Amanda Barren interviews Dr. Stoop  WKYC-TV3, 4/17/12


"Fixing our fatherless culture is the mission of upcoming symposium"  Margaret Bernstein, Plain Dealer, 4/15/12


WHKW the Word's Glenn Mertz interviews Dr. Stoop & Rich Trickel, 4/16/12

WCLV interview with Michael Parry  4/10/12

WCRF interview with Rich Trickel  4/10/12, 6:05 AM story



Special Thank You to the Following Stations for Promotional Support

WCRF Moody Radio Cleveland








95.5 the Fish