Improving Child Wellbeing by Engaging Fathers in Services

The evidence shows that children whose fathers are positively involved in their lives have better outcomes however historically many services have focused on the mother as the primary carer. This event will explore how health, education, family and social services can become ‘father friendly’ so the wellbeing of Scotland’s children can benefit from the shared involvement of both their parents.

Book now to enjoy the early bird rate, available until Friday 2 March 2018
Please quote DADEB20 when booking to receive a 20% discount

Getting it right for every child by engaging with Scotland’s fathers

In 2014, an inquiry by the Equal Opportunities Committee revealed the failure of services to keep pace with changing societal expectations of fathers. It called for the Scottish Government and all agencies to take greater steps to actively include fathers in their policies and practices, recognising that ‘parent’ is often taken to mean ‘mother’.

We know that:

  • Fathers’ active involvement is linked with their children’s higher educational achievement and improved social mobility; as well as better behaviour at school including reduced risk of suspension or expulsion
  • In separated families high levels of non-resident father involvement protects against mental health problems
  • Decreased involvement by young fathers increases young mothers’ parenting stress
  • Having an absent father can contribute to a child’s difficulties with peer relationships including bullying
  • In child protection; a male carer can act as a protective presence, or have important information and insights into the children’s safety

At this event we will illustrate the barriers that fathers can face in becoming more involved in their children’s lives and highlight how these can be overcome. 

Key issues we’ll examine with you

  • How involving both parents improves children’s wellbeing
  • What’s stopping paternal engagement: from working hours to mum-focused marketing
  • Tackling father’s confidence in the parenting, cultural and societal expectations of their role
  • The importance of staff attitudes in boosting engagement
  • Overcoming additional disadvantage such as offending or young parents
  • How we can mainstream ‘dad-inclusive’ practice
  • The role of mothers in encouraging father’s involvement

Who will benefit from attending?

This event will be of interest to anyone planning and/or delivering a service to families in Scotland. This includes teachers, midwives, health visitors, family support workers, early years workers, social workers, child protection officers, children’s charities, community learning and development and many more.

Confirmed speakers

  • Dr Gary Clapton, Senior Lecturer in Social Work, The University of Edinburgh and Committee member, Fathers Network Scotland 
  • Sam Pringle, Director and Head of Research, Fathers Network Scotland
  • Chris Miezitis, Understanding Dad Programme Lead, Fathers Network Scotland


Session 1: Why Shared Parenting Matters

In this opening session we will look at how fatherhood has changed over time and the benefits this brings to Scotland’s families. As we do so we will consider the barriers that still exist for fathers who want to be more actively involved in their children’s lives and how our services can evolve to help continue this positive shift towards shared parenting.

  • Why shared parenting matters: the evidence 
  • A dad shares their experience of engaging with services

Session 2: Interactive: What Makes A Father Inclusive Service?

In this interactive session we will help you build your knowledge, skills and confidence to better engage male parents and carers successfully.

Session 3: Overcoming Barriers to Shared Parenting

In this final session we will consider dad inclusive practice in a range of settings, with a particular focus on working with fathers who may face additional barriers to becoming positively involved in their children’s lives. 

  • Fathers in Prison 
  • Involving fathers in child protection 
  • Including dads in education 
  • Engaging with young fathers
  • Dads to be

*Subject to change


Central Edinburgh, venue to be confirmed in due course.


Delegate rates (excluding VAT):

  • Discounted rate: 1 place £145 + VAT (Voluntary / charitable organisations with an annual income of less than £1m)
  • Reduced rate: 1 place £245 + VAT | 2+ places £195 + VAT (Central government departments and agencies, local authorities, universities, colleges, NHS, police, professional associations and voluntary / charitable organisations with an annual income over £1m)
  • Full rate: 1 place £295 + VAT | 2+ places £245 + VAT (Commercial organisations e.g. plc, Ltd, LLP)

For more information please email or phone 0131 285 1635

22 May 2018
United Kingdom



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