Working With Fathers.

Page Count
Year Published
Author (Individual)
Ryan, M.
Resource Type
Resource Format
This report synthesizes research conducted in Great Britain about the effect of paternal involvement on child development and effective interventions for families in the child welfare system. Recent studies have found that 75 percent of British children are living in two-parent families. Despite a trend in single and step-parenthood, about half of non-resident fathers report that they have regular, monthly contact with their child(ren). Fathers still earn the majority of the family income, but about half of British men disagree with the traditional view of men as the primary breadwinner. Current public policies also support greater participation by fathers in the lives of their children. Families involved in the child protection system have a dramatically different structure than the general population, with only 38 percent of children living with both parents. These families are also more likely to be poor; experience unemployment; and have greater incidences of domestic violence, substance abuse, and criminal behavior. Among families with reports of maltreatment, usually fathers are responsible for sexual abuse and mothers are responsible for physical abuse. Research has identified five major elements of effective child abuse prevention practice which should be addressed in interventions with fathers: sensitive and informed professional-client relationships; appropriate balance of power between participants; wide perspective on child protection; supervision and training for social workers; and services targeted toward improving the child's quality of life. The book highlights findings from research about each of these components and provides examples of effective services. Numerous references and 1 figure.

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