National Fatherhood Initiative (NFI)®, the nation's leading fatherhood organization, and Baytown, Texas, have partnered to launch an innovative community mobilization initiative to engage all city sectors around fatherhood, with an emphasis on reducing drug and opioid misuse. Designed to equip community leaders with the tools needed to address father absence and promote father involvement, NFI's multi-phase Community Mobilization Approach™ (CMA) creates an obtainable vision for rallying a community around responsible and committed fatherhood.
GERMANTOWN, Md., Nov. 29, 2023 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- National Fatherhood Initiative (NFI)®, the nation's leading fatherhood organization, and Baytown, Texas, have partnered to launch an innovative community mobilization initiative to engage all city sectors around fatherhood, with an emphasis on reducing drug and opioid misuse. Baytown Mayor Brandon Capetillo announced the initiative during his 2023 State of the City address.
Today, 1 in 4 (18.4 million) American children do not live with a biological, step, or adoptive father at home. Positive father involvement is associated with better outcomes on nearly every measure of child well-being, including being less likely to abuse drugs or alcohol.
Community mobilization is an assets-based model that identifies, responds to, and drives the mobilization of assets to create change in communities. Designed to equip community leaders with the tools needed to address father absence and promote father involvement, NFI's multi-phase Community Mobilization Approach™ (CMA) creates an obtainable vision for rallying a community around responsible and committed fatherhood.
Baytown's city-wide father engagement initiative will kick off in January 2024 with a workshop during which NFI staff will train community leaders to implement the CMA. NFI will also support leaders in completing a responsible fatherhood needs and assets assessment. Data on the current state of programs and services for fathers in the city will be gathered to produce a clear picture of the city's fatherhood assets and the gaps that must be addressed to mobilize and build capacity to increase father involvement.
During the second phase of the CMA, Baytown will hold a Leadership Summit on Fatherhood facilitated by NFI and Baytown community leaders to generate input in developing a city action plan to promote responsible fatherhood. Through the summit and action plan development, Baytown will create a multi-sector Fatherhood Advisory Council (FAC) and a plan to guide the FAC in mobilizing the city that leverages NFI's father-inclusive programs and resources.
"Many fathers in our city face challenges that prevent them from being actively engaged in their children's lives, including drug or alcohol use," said Thomas Reeves, Director of Public Affairs, with the City of Baytown. "Through our collaboration with National Fatherhood Initiative®, we seek to achieve positive change at home by creating safe and healthy environments for children, fathers, and families. This community mobilization effort will result in a much-needed roadmap for our city to deploy proven strategies that promote and support father involvement."
NFI comes alongside human service organizations and practitioners with a strengths-based approach to father engagement training, evidence-based and evidence-informed fatherhood programs, and other educational materials to help them be more father inclusive. Developed in 1999, NFI has used its CMA to implement multiple community-based fatherhood initiatives as part of statewide efforts in Texas, Indiana, and Ohio and to launch regional and city-wide initiatives in six communities across the U.S.
"An injection of father-focused efforts into both the public and private sectors can have a profound impact on communities," said Christopher Brown, president of National Fatherhood Initiative®. "NFI's Community Mobilization Approach™ will create outcomes that are critical to sustaining buy-in from individuals and organizations to be intentionally father inclusive and providing those who serve Baytown fathers with the resources they need to succeed. We look forward in the coming year to collaborating with Mayor Capetillo and city leaders to launch this mobilization initiative."
About National Fatherhood Initiative®
National Fatherhood Initiative® (NFI) was founded in 1994 to reverse our nation's destructive trend toward father absence. Today, more than 18 million American children live in homes without a biological, step, or adoptive father. Yet, the fact remains that millions of families interact with human service organizations every year that are primarily mother-focused. Therefore, NFI's mission is to increase father involvement by equipping human service organizations and communities with the father engagement training, programs, and resources they need to be father inclusive. Our vision is that all human service organizations and communities are proactively father inclusive so that every child has an involved, responsible, and committed father.
Accordingly, we accomplish our mission by:
- Educating all Americans, especially fathers, through social media, earned media, research, and free resources.
- Equipping organizations and communities with fatherhood programs and resources through training, planning, and technical assistance services.
- Engaging and assisting organizations and communities in mobilizing at the micro-level and macro-level to increase fathers' involvement in children's lives.
For more information on NFI, visit http://www.fatherhood.org.
About the City of Baytown
Located 30 minutes east of Houston, Baytown is a thriving gulf coast community of 84,000 people that offers a unique blend of natural beauty and industry prowess. The community is known for its friendly, caring, and welcoming nature, fostering a sense of unity. Baytown has a rich industrial heritage with companies that produce products that fuel the global economy. The region ranks second in the nation for having the most Fortune 500 headquarters. The enhanced job market and diverse industries contribute to the city's dynamic and inclusive atmosphere.
To find out more about what the City of Baytown has to offer, visit baytown.org.
Maggie Spain, National Fatherhood Initiative®, 405-812-0685, [email protected], fatherhood.org
Melissa Byers, National Fatherhood Initiative®, 240-912-1273, [email protected], fatherhood.org
SOURCE National Fatherhood Initiative®