Family life takes stage at OU Southern

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Ohio University Southern professor Dr. Jim Crawford knows there is no such thing as a typical family in today's society.

With that in mind, families of all shapes and sizes are invited to the second annual Family Life Conference at OUS from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday. The free event will highlight the various issues facing families today.

"We think emphasizing families one day of the year is not too much to do since families are what build our community," said Crawford, director of Ohio University Southern's Center for Innovation and Leadership. "Families and teens can live together but there is no magic way to make it work. It just takes good hard work and that is part of being a family."

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The event is co-sponsored by OUS, the Lawrence County Board of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, GEAR UP, Together We Can and the WDRC Youth Opportunity Program.

Featured speakers are Dr. Ray Guarendi, a father, clinical psychologist and author, and Donte Shackelford, a young "infotainer" with a natural charisma. Workshops will also focus on individual issues relevant to today's families.

Something that makes this year's event unique is that is has been combined with the MRDD's "At the Movies" event to promote awareness. The featured movie will be "Door to Door," an Emmy winning film that tells the true story of Bill Porter, a man with cerebral palsy who succeeded in business despite his disability.