Glenn has worked focusing on supporting fathers for almost ten years running playgroups, special events such as daddy daughter hair days and providing intensive support. Glenn has also delivered training to professionals on father inclusive practice and the value of fathers for children’s development.
Professionals across multiple services work alongside fathers to care for and support the growth and development of children, yet engaging fathers can at times be challenging. However, the value of engaging fathers cannot be understated; there is much research on the positive developmental outcomes children experience with involved fathers, with research also showing that the influence of a fathers love is as great, and at times greater than the influence of mothers. A positively involved father reduces a child’s chances of mental health issues and behavioural problems and improves social emotional wellbeing, performance at school, and is the number one predictor of the development of empathy. The valuing of dads and the value of dads to children doesn’t often break the social conscience and rhetoric. Debunking the myths about working with dads and highlighting opportunities to engage dads in sensitive, inclusive and authentic ways is critical to assisting professionals who support families and children. The Family Place Approach has been developed to provide high quality practices in safe spaces for children and families in the Logan region. This presentation will discuss the outcomes for fathers and children observed through the work at The Family Place. The barriers to engaging with dads, practical strategies to engage them will be discussed including the benefits of fathers to children s development. It is hoped to provide new insights to professionals for the valuing of dads to children’s development so they may show leadership in practice as inclusive services for supporting the whole family.