National Family Week, 2002
By the President of the United States of America
Families provide a loving environment where children can flourish; and they
help ensure that cultural traditions and timeless values are passed on to future
generations. During National Family Week, we reaffirm the importance of families
as a vital source of strength, confidence, and compassion for all of our
Strong families play a critical role in developing the character of our
Nation. They teach children important standards of conduct such as accepting
responsibility, respecting others, and distinguishing the difference between
right and wrong. By helping America's youth to grow into mature, thoughtful, and
caring citizens, families help make our communities and our Nation safer and
Raising a child requires sacrifice, commitment, and time; and we must expand
our efforts to strengthen and empower families so that they can prepare children
more effectively for the challenges of adulthood. We know that by helping
couples to build and sustain strong, two-parent families, we will contribute to
the well-being of our children and the strength of our society. Many single
parents, grandparents, and others also raise their children in difficult
circumstances, and these dedicated individuals deserve our respect and support.
My Administration is firmly committed to helping our Nation's youth reach
their full potential; and one of the most important ways to do this is by
strengthening America's families. Earlier this year, I signed bipartisan
legislation to expand the Promoting Safe and Stable Families Program, which
provides States with vital resources to help families stay together and to
promote adoption. The Program seeks to prevent child abuse and neglect, avoid
removing children from their homes, support family reunification services, and
help those children who are unable to return home by providing crucial adoption
and post-adoptive services. These important resources benefit families across
our Nation and hold the promise of a bright future for countless young people.
My welfare reform agenda also will strengthen families. We plan on continuing
to provide historically high levels of support for childcare and child support
enforcement. And we will continue to encourage strong marriages and two-parent
married families as a worthy policy goal.
No marriage or family is perfect. But through education and counseling
programs that our faith-based, charitable, and government communities can
provide, we will support couples as they work to build and sustain healthy
marriages and strive to provide a better quality of life for their children. By
promoting responsible child-rearing and strong families, my Administration will
work towards the goal that every child has the opportunity to grow up in a safe
and loving home.
As families come together to celebrate this Thanksgiving, I encourage every
member of a family in America to recognize the important role every other family
member plays in making their lives whole and more complete. And as we give
thanks for the love, commitment, and encouragement our families provide, we must
recommit ourselves to strengthen our Nation by strengthening our families in
ways that government never can.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America,
by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the
United States, do hereby proclaim November 24 through November 30, 2002, as
National Family Week. I invite the States, communities, and people of the United
States to join together in observing this day with appropriate ceremonies and
activities to honor our Nation's families.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-second day of
November, in the year of our Lord two thousand two, and of the Independence of
the United States of America the two hundred and twenty-seventh.
GEORGE W. BUSH