Increasing Collaboration in Support of Non-Custodial Parents

Publication Date
June 5, 2012

One of the most important and biggest lessons learned over the past five years working in the fatherhood field is that “You can’t do it by yourself.”

Over the last decade or so, both synergy and energy have revived a renewed interest in looking at the issues facing Non-Custodial (mostly fathers) parents. The 2006 federal funding of Responsible Fatherhood programs did much to stimulate the capacity of the field to serve fathers. Because of it, we are excited about the promise of federal funding. The $75 million for Responsible Fatherhood and $75 million for Healthy Relationships and Marriage will build new capacity in addition to building on the existing infrastructure in the field.

Long gone are the days that a potential grantee can wait until the last few days before a grant is due and scramble for friendly organizations to write a “letter of recommendation.” Collaboration is a must for any organization seeking to work with fathers, particularly low income fathers. The needs are too vast and complex for any one agency to adequately provide the much needed long term case management necessary to provide productive and healthy outcomes.

Listen, I understand. My kindergarten teacher commented on one of my report cards, “Kenny doesn’t play well in the sandbox with others.” What did I have to do?

Don’t be discouraged. I believe we can do it. It’s much more satisfying to win as a team. Our children need our collective ideas, resources and passion to ensure their success. The best way to do that is by finding ways to work with those who are willing and passionate to make a difference. Collaboration done correctly can surely create family change our communities need.

Kenneth Braswell is a fatherhood expert with over 21 years of community development experience, and has previously worked as the Director of the New York State Fatherhood Initiative ( He is currently the Executive Director of Fathers incorporated and a consultant for ICF International.

bot icon
  • Current: Step 1/3
  • Step 2/3
  • Step 3/3
Was this page helpful