The number of males participating in our Parent Engagement events have tripled since our 2012-2013 program year because of Strong Fathers. Not only are they attending the events they continue to do the activities at home on a regular basis. The Strong Fathers Curriculum has made our staff more aware of involving and engaging the dads or other male figures in our everyday programing, ie. conferences, newsletters, health requirements, family days, policy council, parent meetings and volunteering in the classroom.
BONUS: IT IS FUN!! Everyone is having a blast, the curriculum is so easy to follow. They are enjoying it so much they are asking the school districts to try it so they can continue when their children are done in Head Start. We even won the 2014 Program of the Year Award for Excellence in Fatherhood from the Minnesota Fathers and Families Network for our work with Strong Fathers.
Chrystal Wilkie iChrystal Wilkie is the Family and Community Partnership Advisor for Minnesota Valley Action Council Inc.’s Head Start program.
Strong Fathers approach supports easy to implement strategies that engage fathers in meaningful interactions with their programs. The Ounce has implemented an Intentional Father Involvement Project that support programs in creating activities at the programs that engage dads.
Strong Fathers also worked for Ounce programs through regular conference calls that supported them through the planning and implementation of activities. Strong Fathers provided training for education staff in the Head Start programs to ensure that father engagement spread across all content areas of the program.
Joy D’Amico is the Senior Program Manager of Grantee Support Services at Ounce of Prevention Fund