Illinois Fatherhood Initiative
1 North Dearborn Street #1000
Chicago, IL 60602
Phone # 800-996-DADS or 312-986-4274
Fax # 312-986-4166   Email -

     Founder’s Message

Illinois Fatherhood Initiative (IFI) was created in February 1997 to address the increasing problem of father absence in society.  Research indicates that some 24,000,000 children - 1.1 million in Illinois alone - are growing up today in homes without their fathers.  Children from fatherless homes are more likely to:

  • commit suicide

  • run away

  • have behavioral disorders

  • commit rape

  • drop out of high school

  • abuse chemical substances

  • end up in a state operated institution

  • end up in prison


IFI is the country’s first state-wide non-profit fatherhood organization whose mission
is connecting children and fathers by promoting responsible fathering and
helping equip men to become better fathers or father-figures. 

David Hirsch

IFI was founded with the belief that every child deserves to grow up in a home with a loving, caring and involved father or father-figure. 

Through strategic alliances with private, non-profit, and governmental organizations IFI will create and strengthen existing child/father programs by harnessing and unleashing the energy of a diverse group of volunteers (women and men, young and old, and those with and without means) to position Illinois as one of the country’s leading advocates of responsible fathering.

When a child fails, we all pay the price.  No one has a lot of free time, but we all make time for what’s important in our lives.  We also have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of today’s youth.  Please do your part by being present and involved in the lives of your children/grandchildren as well as helping and mentoring the youth who do not have the benefit of growing up with both parents.  There are a number of IFI volunteer opportunities that range from a couple of hours a year to a couple of hours a week.  Please contact an IFI board member or simply send an e-mail to learn more about how to make a difference in your community.

David Hirsch is the father of five children, Director, Credit Suisse - Private Banking USA, actively involved in the community, and makes his home in the Chicago area with his wife Peggy.    

Click for complete biography


The Illinois Fatherhood Initiative is a 501(c)3 charity.
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