As we prepare to celebrate Father's Day, it is essential that we, as adults, are mindful of children’s needs who may not have a strong male role model in their life. Regardless of a family's marital or parental status, children can receive fatherly love from brothers, uncles, grandfathers, male partners, and friends.
Male role models have a profound influence on children from an early age. Their capacity to form trusting relationships and interact positively with others is enhanced when we have strong figures for support and guidance. Children with strong male role models have less anxiety, more self-direction, and are less likely to experience psychological distress.
Even in the absence of a father, there are ways that parents or families can help provide children with a male influence. Here are a few ideas for supporting children whose biological fathers may not play a significant role in their life.
Host a Fatherly Love meet-up at the park where single fathers and children can spend time with other children living with their fathers.
Host a Fatherly Love cookout where significant males: uncle, brother, grandfather, or male friends come together to spend time with your child.
Invite men to a Fatherly Love event such as school plays, sports activities, graduation, and events to support your child.
Host Fatherly Love storytelling event, where they can read a book or tell a story to the group.
Host a Fatherly Love art event where fathers and children paint or draw pictures together.
Encourage male role models to play a part in the child’s everyday life. Simple activities such as playing a game of basketball or doing a puzzle together can have a considerable impact.
Start a Fatherly Love club.
Remember that regardless of the reasons a biological father may be absent from a child's life, the importance of male presence is essential in children's social and emotional growth.