Increasingly, agencies are focusing on ways to engage and involve fathers and other paternal family members, creating greater opportunities for them to be connected in a number of important ways that benefit their children. The following resources address the engagement of fathers and paternal family members and include State and local examples.
Approaches to Father Engagement and Fathers’ Experiences in Home Visiting Programs (PDF - 1,331 KB)
Sandstrom, Gearing, Peters, Heller, Healy, & Pratt (2015)
Presents key themes and findings from a review of home visiting programs that implemented strategies to engage fathers. The report concludes with implications for home visiting program design and implementation.
Change Initiative Exemplar Resources Summary: Father Engagement in Child Welfare (PDF - 216 KB)
National Child Welfare Workforce Institute (2010)
Lists indicators of effective father engagement in child welfare in the areas of leadership and organizational philosophy, program management, policies and procedures, parent-involvement program, physical environment of the program, staff training and professional development, collaboration and organizational networking, and community outreach.
Encouraging Attendance and Engagement in Parenting Programs: Developing a Smartphone Application With Fathers, for Fathers
Balu, Lee, & Steimle (2018)
MDRC & University of Michigan
Describes the development of a smartphone app for fathers to help boost participation and address the challenges they face with parenting program attendance.
Engaging and Supporting Native Fathers (PDF - 171 KB)
Capacity Building Center for Tribes (2016)
Highlights links to selected articles and resources that focus on engaging and supporting Native fathers.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Head Start Bureau
Provides information and resources to enhance father engagement efforts, including wall posters to create father-friendly environments and a webinar on supporting fathers with the help of communities.
Engaging Noncustodial Fathers in Child Welfare Cases: A Guide for Children's Attorneys and Lawyer Guardians ad Litem (PDF - 4,198 KB)
Pilnik & Kendall (2010)
National Quality Improvement Center on Non-Resident Fathers and the Child Welfare System
Offers practice tips to identify and engage nonresident fathers in child clients' cases while keeping the child's best interests at the forefront.
National Family Preservation Network (NFPN)
Provides information on and resources for the NFPN basic and advanced fatherhood training curricula, which focus on best practices and the skills needed to engage fathers. Some of the resources on this website are only available by paying a fee.
Finding Your Way: Guides for Fathers in Child Protection Cases (PDF - 15,808 KB)
American Bar Association and American Humane Association (2011)
Provides important tips for noncustodial fathers involved in child protection cases, focusing on issues such as the father's legal rights, child support and courtroom etiquette. They include information written specifically for fathers on how they can be active participants in their children's case and successfully navigate the child welfare system.
National Latino Fatherhood and Family Institute
Serves as the National Compadres Network's policy, advocacy, and training arm to assist national and community organizations with the development and implementation of programs that resonate with Chicano, Latino, Native, Raza, and other communities of color.
Promoting Responsible Fatherhood
Parents as Teachers
Provides strategies to encourage absent fathers' renewed involvement in their children's lives. The toolkit includes strategies for service providers to improve their practice with fathers and assess agency performance.
Resources for Serving Young Fathers (PDF - 1,550 KB)
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Adolescent Health (2016)
Provides a comprehensive approach for working with young fathers. The toolkit includes a factsheet describing the benefits of positive involvement with children, an assessment and checklist to help make programs more young-father friendly, a workbook with interactive activities to explore fathers' unique challenges and potential, and tips and strategies to recruit and retain young fathers.
Responsible Fatherhood Programming: Two Approaches to Service Delivery (PDF - 103 KB)
Zaveri, Dion, & Baumgartner (2015)
Mathematica Policy Research
Provides an overview of four Responsible Fatherhood grantees and how their different approaches to service delivery address the needs of fathers, influence their engagement and participation in services, and affect the program content to which they are exposed.
Responsible Fatherhood Toolkit: Resources From the Field (PDF - 6,103 KB)
Fathers Incorporated (2013)
Provides a toolkit for practitioners on responsible fatherhood, developing fatherhood programs, ways to effectively engage fathers and families, cultivating community partners, and more. The toolkit includes activities that can be used with fathers participating in responsible fatherhood programs.
Dads Rock! Nurturing Father Engagement [Webinar]
National Child Abuse and Neglect Technical Assistance and Strategic Dissemination Center (2017)
Presents the benefits of father involvement in the lives of children and features the work of the Children's Trust of Massachusetts Fatherhood Initiative. The webinar also explores the challenges in attracting fathers to services.
Learning Resources for Father Engagement
North Carolina Division of Social Services, Children's Services Statewide Training Partnership (2013)
Training Matters, 14(2)
Provides social workers in North Carolina with resources highlighting the benefits of father involvement in promoting child development, tools for engaging nonresident fathers, and suggestions for conducting interviews with fathers.
New Hampshire Department of Education: The E3 Teen Fatherhood Program
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Adolescent Health (2017)
Provides information about a program to increase the likelihood that teen fathers will develop skills and knowledge to lead successful lives and to fully engage in the parenting of their children. The E3 program approach is to improve education, employment, and family engagement for teen fathers in New Hampshire and to build a sustainable network of stakeholders and partners to serve their unique needs.