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The Value of a Father Engagement Experience™

Posted by Erik Vecere

father engagement training

Many organizations spin their wheels when it comes to engaging fathers, never gaining the traction they need to create a sustainable local, state, or national fatherhood program or initiative.

The Father Engagement Experience™ (FEE) removes the guesswork by laying out a customized plan to effectively engage fathers. Organizations have used the FEE to develop concise, accountable plans that address their unique organizational culture, challenges, and resources. And it only took the investment of one or two days!

What is the FEE, you say? It’s an interactive, in-person strategic planning session facilitated by National Fatherhood Initiative (NFI), the nation’s leader in providing resources, training, and technical assistance on engaging fathers.

NFI facilitators use a structured process (e.g. storyboards, Pure Form Thinking, and multi-voting) to help organizations establish goals and identify father-engagement strategies. NFI facilitators further assist by providing insight and recommendations drawn from 23 years of experience partnering with thousands of organizations.

The session results in a customized Father Engagement Game Plan™ that any organization can use to accomplish great things around responsible fatherhood.

I’ve been fortunate to facilitate dozens of these sessions with diverse organizations, large and small. I’ve seen the development and execution of many wonderful, effective plans. Some examples include:

  • Washington DC Housing Authority: integrated fatherhood programs, services, and resources throughout their properties
  • Care Net: developed and launched a fatherhood initiative that provides strategies and tools for pregnancy centers across the US
  • Tracy Family Foundation: created a project to fund five Illinois-based organizations to implement the 24/7 Dad® and Understanding Dad™ programs
  • Kalamazoo County Health & Community Services: established a comprehensive countywide collaborative network for fathers

The Tennessee Department of Human Services and the Kansas Department for Children and Families will be using the FEE in the next 2 months to better integrate father engagement training into the programs and services they provide across their states.

Like these examples, the FEE is a process that can also elevate your fatherhood work and provide you with a customized plan to guide your next steps towards better father engagement.

Have you developed a strategic plan to more effectively engage fathers in your work?

What do you stand to lose by not using the FEE to take your organization’s father-engagement work to the next level?

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Topics: fatherhood program planning

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