Family organisations join to urge more help for young dads

4 January 2013

Young fathers need more support to help them develop and maintain a positive presence in their children’s lives, according to a new report by a coalition of family support organisations including the Fatherhood Institute.

In the report, Are we nearly there yet, Dad?, the Family Strategic Partnership (led by Barnardo’s) plus a group of voluntary sector bodies (including the Fatherhood Institute) recommended that Government should collect data on fathers systematically, local authorities should appoint lead professionals to coordinate support for young fathers, and relationship support provision should focus more on supporting father-child relationships.

The report features six case studies of young fathers’ journeys through different aspects of family services, from maternity services onwards. Common themes throughout the six journeys are that the young fathers:

• are coping with complex identity changes

• often experience significant financial hardship

• require legal advice to maintain contact with their child

• benefit from relationship support to maintain contact with the mother, and

• need parenting advice as much as mothers, but tailored to a male audience.

Adrienne Burgess, joint chief executive of the Fatherhood Institute, welcomed the report: ‘It is so important that we do all we can to help young fathers, as well as young mothers, forge strong, positive relationships with their children. Young dads are among the most marginalised of parents in Britain today. It’s great that so many big organisations are now speaking out about young dads – something that would never have happened even five years ago.’

Download the report


Download the Fatherhood Institute’s Research Summary on Young Fathers

Buy Invisible Fathers, our resource pack for professionals working with young dads.


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One Comment »

  • andrew says:

    Young fathers maintaining a positive presence in their children’s lives?
    All rational people would want this, but what are the main ingredients that need to be in place to enable our fathers, young and old, to be good parents?

    1. Time, and lots of it. Most father’s will naturally and instinctively play with their children. A bond will develop and trust can be built on. A father will naturally protect beings more vulnerable than himself. He will be gentle and kind.

    2. Appreciation and acceptance from other adults for his fatherly work.

    3. Support from organisations that are non-judgmental nor prejudiced against his gender for the child care work he is doing.

    4. A media information service that doesn’t continually portray him as someone who doesn’t care about his children, dislikes or doesn’t shop, deserts his family or spends all his money on anti-social activities.

    Feel free to add to the above………….

    Length of time required? As long as it takes.

    Minimum for myself is 50% of all the time that I have. This is not only my “parental responsibility” it’s my life.

    For all those of you who need to negotiate this crucial child care time I recommend the following website:
    Here you will be able to detail child care time. Hopefully the powers that be will begin to take you seriously when you come armed to the hilt with details about your allocation of child care time versus your former partner’s time.

    Kind regards


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