Sheldon Smith, the founder of The Dovetail Project, a 501(c)(3) organization that gives young fathers within marginalized communities a better understanding of the responsibilities of fatherhood and their importance in the lives of their children, is featured in the 2022 'People of the Year' issue of People Magazine, out now. This issue features a two-page article highlighting Smith's inspirational story of how he went from being charged as an adult for armed robbery at the age of 17 to building a successful nonprofit program that provides young Black and Brown men the necessary resources they need to become better fathers.
Smith's organization, The Dovetail Project, rewrites the narrative of Black and Brown men between the ages of 17 to 24 by providing the education, skills, and support needed to be better fathers for their children and better men in their communities. The Dovetail Project's 12-week curriculum emphasizes the roles, rights and responsibilities of fatherhood, felony street law and how to maintain an active, engaged presence in their children's lives. Upon completing the program, fathers receive a $500 stipend, are coached and prepared for job opportunities, GED registration and completion, or enrollment in a trade training program.
In the article, Smith shares his experience growing up with an absent father and how it led him to spiral out of control. As a result, he was thrown into Cook County jail at the age of 17 but was able to overcome that adversity and receive a second chance. Today, Smith has helped nearly 600 young men become better fathers and built the nation's largest nonprofit fatherhood initiative.
In People Magazine, he states, "I wanted to break the cycle." After becoming a father at the age of 21, he never wanted his daughter to feel the loss that he felt with his father.
Sheldon Smith and The Dovetail Project have been recognized by prominent figures such as Michelle Obama in addition to national media features on the TODAY Show, ELLEN, CNN, Forbes, BBC, Chicago Tribune, Black Enterprise and more.
Smith and The Dovetail Project recently celebrated its 6th annual Turkeys and Trees Giveaway event to Chicago families through The Dovetail Project Fatherhood Relief Fund, an initiative of the Dovetail Project, with support from generous leading sponsors Roquan Smith (former #58 Chicago Bears, current #18 Baltimore Ravens), Chicago Bulls, Belvedere Trading, and the Rosdal Family.
Smith hopes to inspire young fathers and future nonprofit leaders when readers view his piece in People Magazine.
The Dovetail Project can be seen on pages 108 and 109 in the 'People of the Year' print issue and is online at www.people.com.
To learn more about The Dovetail Project, visit www.thedovetailproject.org.
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Original Source: Founder of The Dovetail Project Shares How His Troubled Upbringing Became a Catalyst for Developing the Largest Fatherhood Initiative in the U.S. in People Magazine