While I wholeheartedly appreciate getting off early from work, particularly because I have no family here to go eat with (so I can goof off instead), I find it very amusing that there is a specific day that needs to be called out for this.
Some information about National Family Week:
The National Family Week (NFW) is an annual national campaign to celebrate and reinforce the joy and importance of family. Celebrated since 1985, and in its 23rd year, National Family Week 2007 will be from 26 May to 2 June, with celebrations extending to 30 June.
Some information about Eat With Your Family Day:
‘Eat With Your Family Day’, first organised by the Centre for Fathering (CFF) in 2003, seeks to remind families of the importance of spending time with one another. And what better way to be with family than to eat together with family.
Research by the National Center for Addition and Substance Abuse (CASA) in the USA has since 1996 consistently shown that the more often a child eats dinner with his family, the less likely the child is to engage in smoking, drinking or drug abuse. The 1998 CASA Teen Survey found that teens who eat dinner with their parents twice a week or less were 4 times more likely to smoke cigarettes, 3 times more likely to use drugs, and twice as likely to drink compared to those who ate dinner with parents 6 or 7 times a week. CASA’s 1999 Teen Survey from families that almost never eat dinner together were 72% likelier than the average teen to use illegal drugs, cigarettes and alcohol, while those from families that always eat dinner together were 31% less likely than the average teen to engage in these activities. William Doherty, professor of social science at the University of Minnesota has this to say of the family meal, “One of the core predictors of children’s well-being and academic success is how much time they spend eating with adults,”