Caring Dads for Healthy Safe Kids

The Cause

We are seeking support to start a Caring Dads Program this fall to help children in homes with family violence and abuse. The Caring Dads Program encourages fathers to make healthier choices. Programs that work to shift attitudes have a positive effect on future generations of kids.

The Caring Dads Program aims to have men become aware of why they choose abusive behaviour, increase their awareness and application of child-centered fathering, and to promote respectful co-parenting with children’s mothers regardless of the status of their relationships. It is an-evidence based counselling model designed from the premise that violence against women and violence against children are intricately intertwined, and that these two issues both can and should be addressed together.

Our pilot program will run for sixteen weeks from September 2019 to January 2020. Success will be determined by a shift in the actions and attitudes of the fathers by measuring:

• trust of the fathers in the program
• the increase of father’s knowledge and application of parenting techniques that promote the over-all wellbeing of the kids
• the increase of father’s knowledge of their abusive behavioural choices, the subsequent consequences of those choices, and their personal responsibility
• the father’s focus on consolidating learning, rebuilding trust, and planning for the future

Who Will it Benefit?

The Caring Dads Program is designed to benefit children in homes with violence and abuse. Research indicates children who witness domestic violence can demonstrate psychological responses similar to those of children who are direct victims of violence and abuse. Whether experiencing violence and abuse directly or indirectly, children may develop negative behavioral shifts, bed wetting, regression in language use, poor academic achievements, and lifelong poor physical and mental health.

The Caring Dads Program is an ideal format to provide broader support for children experiencing family violence and abuse as it prioritizes the health and safety of children. It also aims to establish a respectful co-parenting relationship between the victim (mother) and perpetrator (father). All members of a family experiencing family violence and abuse can benefit when the perpetrator participates in the program.

For more information about the Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter: