For more than 45 years, the week including Thanksgiving has been proclaimed National Family Week. President Trump is expected to issue a proclamation again this year for the week of November 24-30, 2019. This observance was the idea of Mr. Sam Wiley, a teacher, basketball coach and school administrator in Indiana who observed the stark difference in children who came from strong, supportive families and those who were not being raised in a traditional family unit. He conceived of the idea to set aside a time during Thanksgiving -- when families traditionally gather to give thanks for their many blessings -- to recognize the important role family plays in our society. As Ronald Reagan said in his first National Family Week proclamation as President:
“The family is the basic unit of our society, the heart of our free democracy. It provides love, acceptance, guidance, support, and instruction to the individual. Community values and goals that give America strength also take root in the home. In times of change and challenge, families keep safe our cultural heritage and reinforce our spiritual foundation.
As the mainstay of our national life, family life must be preserved. When a family needs external assistance to help it to perform its unique role, this assistance should not interfere with the family's fundamental responsibilities and prerogatives. Rather, aid should be supportive and purposeful in strengthening the family's stability, self-sufficiency and permanence.
National Family Week is a time to be thankful for the family as a national heritage and resource. It is a time to recommit ourselves to the concept of the family -- a concept that must withstand the trends of lifestyle and legislation. Let us pledge that our institutions and policies will be shaped to enhance an environment in which families can strengthen their ties and best exercise their beliefs, authority, and resourcefulness. And let us make our pledge mindful that we do so not only on behalf of individual family members, but for America.”
Individuals and organizations are encouraged to set up National Family Week activities. This is a great opportunity for events (dinners, seminars, special events), as well as advocacy (Op-Eds, commentaries, web content, news releases). Use your imagination. This is a perfect occasion for promoting pro-family policies. Here are some ideas for activities during National Family Week –
· Announce support for pro-family policies and legislation
· Recognize pro-family legislators and policy makers
· Include National Family Week content on your web site
· Host an event to highlight your pro-family issues and activities
For further information contact: John Palatiello, National Family Week Foundation, 10340 Democracy Lane, Suite 300