Professional Development Opportunities for Father-Serving Practitioners: Helping New Dads Thrive
The Father’s Feelings Project team at OhioGuidestone‘s Institute of Family & Community Impact® is leading ongoing professional development opportunities for a wide range of practitioners who work with fathers during the perinatal period — from the time they are expecting a baby until the child’s first birthday.
These trainings introduce the importance of engaging fathers during this time, especially in family services and programs. In particular, we discuss the impacts on child development and supporting fathers’ mental health and wellbeing. Additionally, participants may join a Community of Learners for a more in-depth look at serving fathers in real-world practices.
These Communities of Learners are open to anyone who works with fathers with babies, pregnant women, and families in organizational or community settings (e.g., churches, schools, and so on). Looking to learn how to engage fathers in child and family matters, link them to services, and provide father-specific support? Then this is for you!
Fatherhood practitioners, mental health providers, teachers, barbers, church ministers, early childhood educators, home visitors, librarians, community liaisons, community health workers, women’s health and pediatric providers, and WIC professionals are a few examples of fields who would be perfect to join our two-part Community of Learners sessions. Each session will be virtual, offered as a “lunch ‘n’ learn” (noon to 1 p.m.) or “coffee time” (9 to 10 a.m.) time slot, and build a network to identify the health and personal needs of fathers with babies and connect them to services and organizations.
Why Father’s Feelings?
Becoming a new dad can be exciting and overwhelming at the same time. Even if this isn’t a father’s first baby, each infant may offer different joys and challenges. Because fathers are instrumental in child rearing, we want to serve them and their children better.
Our Father’s Feelings Project research study gives dads an opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings about their baby and their lives as parents. Better still, it offers ideas for strengthening father-child bonds. Because we know that dads matter, too!
We also are developing a paternal depression screening tool. Because we believe that a father’s mental health is important for whole family wellbeing, we’re centering fathers and fatherhood so that they can receive the focus, care, and assistance they need from professionals who serve families and children.
To learn more about the Father’s Feelings Project, please visit familyandcommunityimpact.org/fathers-feelings-study.