When you help a dad to be more involved, responsible, and committed to his child, you help build that child's resilience.
Resilience is a critical factor in a child's ability to navigate life's challenges--to bounce back and thrive when life throws a child the inevitable curve ball.
As the video below shows, researchers on child development have determined that genetic and environmental factors play a role in how resilient a child is and can become. Some children are born with more resilience than others. Natural resilience helps explain why some children--even those related to one another and raised in the same home--differ in their ability to handle the stress imposed by their environment (e.g. poverty and child maltreatment).
But regardless of natural resilience, every child benefits from the outside supports they receive to build resilience.
There is no more important outside support for a child than a loving, caring relationship with their parents. When a child grows up without an involved, responsible, committed dad, they are at an environmental disadvantage. They are at risk for a host of poor outcomes that result from the stressful situations associated with a dad's absence (e.g. poverty and child maltreatment).
Never forget that the primary goal in helping a dad to be the best dad he can be is to improve his child's well-being. Regardless of the level at which you serve dads with National Fatherhood Initiative programs or resources, know that every dad you help become more involved, responsible, and committed to his child, the more resilience you'll build in that child--resilience that will serve that child throughout life!
How much do you know about the role of resilience in child well-being?
What environmental supports, other than loving, caring parents, help build a child's resilience?
Check out NFI's Help Me Grow Guide for more information on how to help dads be more involved in their child's development.