Last Father’s Day, President Obama challenged young men to step up as fathers, asking them to recognize that their “responsibility does not end at conception.” VH1 and 3 Ball Productions are taking that call to heart with the new series “Dad Camp,” which tasks a small group of young fathers-to-be to step up and become responsible and caring parents. “Dad Camp” premieres on VH1 on Monday, May 31 at 10:30 PM*
There is no turning back for the fathers-to-be on “Dad Camp.” Unprepared boyfriends, along with their pregnant girlfriends, will work with famed relationship expert Dr. Jeff Gardere. Dr. Jeff, a licensed psychologist and no-nonsense therapist, will take on the challenge to prepare these six young men for fatherhood. In the eight, hour-long episode series, the young fathers will face the inevitable truth: A baby is coming soon, whether they like it or not. Through parenting classes, personal challenges and intense couple and group therapy sessions, each couple will learn the importance of selflessness and the commitment they must make to their unborn child.
Participating couples will move into the same house working and supporting each other during a variety of tough, progressive lessons in parenting, honesty and maturity. In each episode, Dr. Jeff initiates an intensive parenting lesson and challenge for the young men in order to prepare them for fatherhood. Through Dr. Jeff’s challenges, these young men learn that their choices can cause a negative effect on the child. For example, these six young men are each paired up with a youth who has not had a nurturing, paternal influence in his or her life. These challenges help the young men conquer their fear of fatherhood and make a commitment to their girlfriends and new family.
“We’re really proud of ‘Dad Camp’ because it shows a group of unprepared fathers-to-be how to embrace their looming responsibilities while also reminding viewers in general that parenthood is something to be taken seriously by both parents,” said Jeff Olde, EVP, Original Programming and Production, VH1. “This series is just the latest example of how VH1 is expanding its storytelling formats to reflect some of the issues that confront our young adult audience.”
“Dad Camp” also addresses many of today’s societal issues including the importance of male role models, absent fathers and the struggles of being a young parent. In the dramatic conclusion, the mothers-to-be will decide whether they will be a family or if they will leave their irresponsible boyfriends and raise their babies on their own, ultimately deciding the fate of their children’s future.
Executive Producer and 3 Ball CEO JD Roth said, “With ‘Dad Camp,’ we really wanted to go beyond exploring the critical role of fatherhood in today’s family, and give dads something useful and tangible that they could take away. We’re so appreciative that VH1 was savvy enough to allow us to do a show that delved this deep into the issue, and into the hearts and minds of real people trying to solve real problems in their lives, and transform into better parents along the way.”
“Dad Camp” premieres Monday, May 31 on VH1 at 10:30PM. JD Roth, Todd A. Nelson and Adam Greener are Executive Producers for 3 Ball Productions. Jeff Olde, Jill Holmes and Sean Boyle are Executive Producers for VH1.
Viewers can catch a sneak peek of the season’s first episode on VH1.com beginning Friday, May 28. Subsequent episodes will be available on VH1.com every Tuesday morning following their Monday night premiere. Additional video content from “Dad Camp” including extras from each episode will be available on VH1.com and on VH1 Mobile throughout the season.
“Dad Camp” Premieres Monday, May 31 at 10:30PM*
Catch a Sneak Peek of the Premiere Episode http://drjeffgardere.com/vh1_video.htm
on VH1.com Beginning Friday, May 28
Partnership Inspired by President Obama’s National Conversation on Responsible Fatherhood
WASHINGTON, May 19 /PRNewswire/ — The National Fatherhood Leaders Group (NFLG), a consortium of the leading fatherhood organizations in the U.S., is teaming up with VH1 on the premiere of the television network’s upcoming original series “Dad Camp,” which focuses on encouraging responsible fatherhood, featuring licensed psychologist Dr. Jeff Gardere.
The partners’ goal is to generate awareness and discussion around the importance of fathers in children’s lives. The cornerstone of the collaboration is the promotion of national “Watch Parties” for the series premiere on Monday, May 31 at 10:30 PM ET/PT on VH1. Participating fatherhood groups are now mobilizing their constituents and asking them to create and promote local viewing events tied to the premiere to spark discussion around the country about responsible fatherhood and the challenges that young men face today.
The National Fatherhood Leaders Group members include:
- Center for Urban Families
- Celebrate Dads
- National Center for Fathering
- National Center on Fathers and Families
- National Fatherhood Initiative
- National Partnership for Community Leadership
- Center for Research on Fathers, Children and Family Well-Being
- Brookings Institute
- National Latino Fatherhood and Family Institute
- Fathers Incorporated
In the series “Dad Camp,” licensed psychologist and no-nonsense therapist Dr. Jeff Gardere works with six fathers-to-be, along with their pregnant girlfriends, to help prepare the young men for fatherhood — a responsibility that they’re just not ready for yet. Throughout the course of the series, the young fathers will face the inevitable truth: A baby is coming soon, whether they like it or not. Through parenting classes, personal challenges around responsibility, and intense couples and group therapy sessions, each couple will learn the importance of selflessness and the commitment they must make to their unborn child. “Dad Camp” is produced by 3 Ball Productions/Eyeworks USA, producers of the hit television series “The Biggest Loser.”
In addition, the National Fatherhood Leaders Group has developed a discussion guide to help facilitate conversations about the issues brought up in the show, including the economic and emotional demands of being a parent. The guide will be found on all of the partners’ web sites, as well as “20 Reasons Why A Child Needs An Active Father In Their Life,” which provide research findings that support the needs for young fathers to embrace parenthood. The sites will also feature resource pages, linking readers directly to information, advice and support regarding responsible fatherhood. VH1’s “Dad Camp” dedicated site is at www.dadcamp.vh1.com.
“We were inspired last year by President Obama’s words to young men reminding them that fatherhood doesn’t end at conception. Being a parent, whether you’re ready for it or not, is a major issue that many of our young adult VH1 viewers face,” said Tom Calderone, President, VH1. “We so appreciate the dedicated and resourceful members of the National Fatherhood Leaders Group and thank them all for helping to amplify the message behind ‘Dad Camp’ — that it really takes two committed parents to successfully fulfill a child’s potential.”
“Our organizations’ efforts are motivated by the national conversation that President Obama started about the necessity of responsible fatherhood in our society,” said Dr. Jeffery Johnson, Vice Chairman of the National Fatherhood Leaders Group and President and CEO of the National Partnership for Community Leadership. “To us, ‘Dad Camp’ illustrates the challenges that many young fathers face today and helps provide ideas for some solutions. We’re happy to elevate this issue and create dialogue around it across the country.”
The National Fatherhood Leaders Group is a coalition of national and community-based fatherhood organizations and allied groups. Our mission is to raise awareness of the importance of two involved parents in the lives of children and to strengthen the capacity of the responsible fatherhood field. We seek to help children by helping their parents build strong families. Almost 40 percent of children in the United States are born to unmarried parents, and often both parents have low incomes. Many children who grow up without their fathers struggle and are vulnerable to a number of negative risk factors. The public costs of father absence on children are substantial, including poverty, low academic achievement, juvenile delinquency, and early pregnancy. www.nflgonline.org.
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Dr. Jeff Gardere, better known as America’s Psychologist, is one of the most widely sought-after experts in the field of parenting and relationships. Dr. Jeff obtained a doctorate in philosophy and psychology at George Washington University and became a chief psychologist for the Federal Bureau of Prisons.
He later founded a clinical practice in Manhattan focusing on the mental health needs of families. In addition to his private practice, he has garnered a reputation as being a top motivational and keynote speaker, and empowerment and media coach. Dr. Jeff has authored several books, including his controversial book, “Love Prescription.” He is also the co-author of “Practical Parenting” with Montel Williams. Dr. Jeff’s first book, “Smart Parenting for African-Americans: Helping Your Kids Thrive in a Difficult World” has been lauded as being “necessary for raising African-American children in today’s society.” Dr. Jeff is also a monthly columnist for “Sister 2 Sister Magazine.”