Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Finding Help and Support for Fathers

While not in the form of cash handouts, there is a growing network of help for fathers in their role of supporting and helping to raise their kids.  I was made aware of a program called Fatherhood Connections in nearby Wood, Ottawa, Sandusky Seneca and Hancock counties in Ohio that provides support services and job training for fathers in those counties.  Last fall, I also found out that part of the Northwest Ohio Reentry Coalition work involved helping fathers with child support issues.  It's part of a nationwide initiatve to help fathers. 

How do you find if there's a program in your area?  One way to track them is through the 211 social services system in your area. Another is to check this nationwide map of state and local fatherhood initiatives.  But it's not exhaustive.  However, if you find the state office in your state, you can check them out and see who they may have funded locally.

That's how I found out about a number of programs in Ohio:  the Urban Light program in Clark county/Springfield, Fame Fathers; in Portage, Stark, Medina, Summit and Wayne counties(Akron-Canton area) in Ohio, which runs among other things, mentoring for both younger and older fathers, help for incarcerated and soon-to-be-released fathers, and workforce opportunities for low-income fathers; and the Columbus Urban League's Fathers 2 Fathers program, which offers advocacy and support in child support, visitation, and other legal issues.

Another way to find programs in your area is to google "fatherhood initiative" and the name of your city. 

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