The Father Absence Crisis in Pregnancy

Guest Blog by Ryan Sanders, National Fatherhood Initiative

Parents and BabyAt National Fatherhood Initiative (NFI), we talk a lot about the crisis of father absence. You, who serve in the pregnancy centers, see this crisis every day. A boy makes a baby and is unable or unwilling to be involved in his or her life. It is one thing to ensure the safety and health of the baby, but quite another task to make sure the child is raised by an involved, responsible, and committed father.

This is why NFI works with pregnancy centers to ensure that they have the tools and training they need to integrate fathers into their work, helping them build strong families. This is no small task. But, we know from research, when dad is involved, the child’s chances of success increase. We know that when a child grows up without his or her dad in the home, the child is:

– More likely to go to prison
– More likely to commit a crime
– Seven times more likely to become pregnant as a teen
– More likely to abuse drugs and alcohol
– Two times more likely to drop out of high school

These are just a few of the odds stacked against a child when dad is not in his or her life . Imagine, with the over 1.8 million women who visit the over 2,500 pregnancy centers in the United States, each family that comes through your doors has a need for a focus on dad. That’s what our skill-building resource, 24/7 Dad® does. It gives the mom the help she needs. It gives the child the help he or she deserves. It builds strong families.

I know you are in the work of training and volunteering women and families so mothers in crisis get the opportunities and help they deserve. That is a most-worthy cause. And for this I thank you. I know you are also wake up in the morning to do your work of serving because you care about—not only the mom—but the child—and the entire family. You care about the next generation. I applaud your efforts to serve where and when it matters most. At such a critical time in the life of a child and mother, I think your goals, and NFI’s mission, are one in the same…to build strong families…right from the beginning. It really is all about that beautiful child created in the image of God.

NFI stands with you, ready to build strong families. God bless your work. If you wish, you may find details about our 24/7 Dad® Program by signing up for one of two free webinars coming up on January 20th and 21st. Visit here (http://www.fatherhood.org/fatherhood/247-dad-third-edition-whats-new) for more details or to learn more about 24/7 Dad® visit here (http://www.fatherhood.org/fatherhood/247-dad-third-edition-whats-new)

Ryan Sanders is Director of Marketing and Communications at National Fatherhood Initiative. He is married with two young daughters and lives in Washington, DC. Follow him on twitter @TheFatherFactor.

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