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The Father Factor


FRPN Free Webinar > Two Generation Strategies to Engage and Serve Low-Income Fathers

NFI President Christopher A. Brown sits on the Fatherhood Research & Practice Network (FRPN) advisory committee. FRPN has announced their next (and ninth!) free webinar for researchers and practitioners.

Preparation Key to Success for Fatherhood Programs

As we celebrate our nation’s birthday this week, it pays to reflect on the practices that helped some of our nation’s greatest leaders to succeed.

The Lesson Whole Foods Market Offers for Serving Dads

Recent developments with the natural and organic foods grocer Whole Foods Market (WFM) provide a powerful lesson for building and maintaining a program or service for dads.

Stick with me as I provide the details of this story.

Why You Shouldn’t Put Dads in Boxes

Have you heard the term “perennials?”

No. Not the type of flower.

I ask instead whether you’ve heard the recently coined term that describes people of all ages who have “an inclusive, enduring mindset.” Their perspective and behavior defy the stereotype of their own generations. They are of all ages. They have friends of all ages. They embrace today’s technology. They are curious. They want to learn and grow.

How to Build Trust and Rapport with Dads

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Antione Harvis of Dad’s League, a fatherhood program in Opelika, Alabama. Dad’s League partners with the Family Resource Center in Opelika and surrounding communities to serve dads.

Dad’s League holds “locker room sessions” in which Antione and several teams of volunteer dads facilitate National Fatherhood Initiative’s (NFI’s) 24/7 Dad® A.M. and P.M. programs. Dad’s League facilitates the programs in five settings: community-based non-profits, corrections, schools, veterans, and faith-based. They will soon start to facilitate the InsideOut Dad® program in a county jail and detention center.

When I asked Antione what is the primary job he has to accomplish with dads, he said that it’s to establish trust and rapport. He says that establishing a connection of trust first and then establishing rapport as the foundation of a good relationship with dads is critical to getting them to commit to attend locker room sessions.

Read on.

FRPN Free Webinar > Achieving High Response Rates and Dealing with Missing Data in Fatherhood Evaluations

NFI President Christopher A. Brown sits on the Fatherhood Research & Practice Network (FRPN) advisory committee. FRPN has announced their next (and eighth!) free webinar for researchers and practitioners.

Measuring the Results of Your Fatherhood Program

Planning how you will evaluate your fatherhood program is arguably just as important as all of the other steps we've discussed in my 6 previous blogs on creating a successful fatherhood program. 

Evaluations allow you to get the best results, and correct your course if something is not working. An evaluation is like a GPS – it tells you whether you’re headed in the right direction and helps you to correct your course if necessary. 

There are many ways you can evaluate a program; it's up to you (or your funder) to determine how you will measure the impact of your program on the dads you serve. Read on to learn about different types of evaluations and resources to help you decide how you will evaluate your program.

The Quest for Fatherhood Program Funding

If you read my last blog in this series, you have some great ideas for creating a logic model or a father engagement plan for your program. Now, you need a way to pay for your program. And pay for it over the long-term.

How are you going to find funding for all this much needed fatherhood work?

Let's chat funding.

200+ Ideas for Recruiting Dads into Fatherhood Programs

Crescent City WIC Services in Gretna, LA provides the USDA-funded Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, or WIC for short. Crescent City WIC recently launched a fatherhood program called 504 Dads. (The area code for Gretna is 504.) They use the 24/7 Dad® program as the foundation of 504 Dads.

A few weeks ago, I received an email from the staffer at Crescent City WIC in charge of the launch. She told me about their struggles to get dads enrolled in 504 Dads. She mentioned their plan to bring community organizations together to generate referrals and to help Crescent City WIC brainstorm ways to recruit dads into the program. She asked for any advice or resources NFI could provide.

Creating a Sustainable Fatherhood Program

Do you think of the word "sustainable" when you think "fatherhood program"? If not, please do. One of the most common things we hear from organizations who run fatherhood programs is that they ran out of funding, or, that it wasn't something they could afford to keep. It wasn't sustainable.

Creating a sustainable fatherhood program from the start is key. Why put all of that effort into something if it's not going to last?

So let's talk sustainability.

We Can Help You Solve the Mystery of Marketing Your Fatherhood Program

Marketing. Maybe you love it, maybe you hate it. Maybe you just don't know how to do it. When it comes to promoting your fatherhood program, good marketing is necessary.

For years we've heard from practitioners that recruiting dads is their biggest challenge. But, with the right marketing assets (think: print and online templates) that communicate a cohesive, catchy message (which includes your program logo and custom info), you can most definitely become the "marketing ninja" your organization needs to bring those dads in the door.

Introducing the NEW 'Be There' Campaign Kit: customizable marketing materials to recruit fathers into your fatherhood program. Read on to learn more.

How to Choose the Best Tools for Your Fatherhood Program

People sometimes ask how NFI came to be the nations's leading provider of programs and resources for dads. Well, it all stems from our long history of providing the latest research on the affects on children and society as a result father absence, and the benefits of father involvement.

It wasn't good enough for us to simply state the research and facts. We needed to take action on those facts at a national level to work to reverse the nation's trend of father absence. So in 2001, we began building an extensive portfolio of high quality fatherhood skill-building resources, curricula, and training (think: tools) to equip organizations around the country to help men be the best dads they could be. We now have over 100. Whoa.

So how do I select the best NFI tools and resources for my organization, you say? I'm glad you asked.

Creating the "Hook" for Your Fatherhood Program

There are many fatherhood programs with dedicated staff, curriculum, a facility, and community support – but lack participants. This is the biggest complaint we hear. 

It's a fact that getting dads involved in your programs and services takes planning and skill.

So let me ask you: what's your hook? 

Is Your Own Organization Getting in the Way?

I hear time and again from community-based organizations or pregnancy centers that they want to serve dads, and in some cases, hove gone as as far as creating a fatherhood program with volunteers and staff to run it... but they "don't get any dads". And they just don't understand why.

Well, my response to this statement is usually quite surprising. I respond with questions around how fully fathers are integrated into the organization's mission, leadership, physical center, intake forms, programs, resources, etc. In return, I often get a blank stare (and then, usually, a light bulb moment!)

As I continue my series of blogs on 7 Steps to Starting a Successful Fatherhood Program, let's discuss a tool that helps you determine how friendly your organization is to fathers, so that you can get from A (nothing for dads) to B (success in serving fathers).

Making the Case for a Fatherhood Program

Planning for, and starting a fatherhood program can seem daunting. Perhaps overwhelming. But we're here to help.

Over the next 7 weeks, I will cover the 7 Steps to Starting a Successful Fatherhood Program. Whether you're looking to do something small or large, these tips will no doubt set you on the right path to better engage fathers.

So let's get started with Step 1: Making the Case for a Fatherhood Program.

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