We understand the importance of the father’s role in child development. Read about one of our social return projects that invited dads and kids to bond over nature

13 Jul 2018

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Earlier this year, we funded a project that invited school children from Dewsbury and their fathers on forest school taster sessions filled with fun activities. Allowing them to bond, the sessions were run by Annie from our fellow social enterprise partners GetOutMore CIC. The project was designed to strengthen the bond between fathers and their children and facilitate an improvement in parent-child relationships.

The pupils came from Boothroyd Primary Academy and St Paulinus Primary. “Taster” sessions took place throughout the months of March 2018 and June 2018. The sessions were well attended with a total of 24 fathers. Activities such as fire lighting, marshmallow toasting and den building took place on the sessions. These “family building” tasks allowed the fathers and their children to learn new skills with each other.

Studies have found that there are many advantages of fathers spending quality time with their children. To give some examples: it makes a child more socially and psychologically stronger, it increases a child’s physical and mental development and also reduces stress levels for fathers and their children.

Feedback was gathered from those that attended. One of the fathers from St Paulinus Primary School commented on how him and his daughter found the session…

“I enjoyed spending time with my daughter and also interacting with other families. It was great to teach the kids about the great outdoors. My daughter really enjoyed herself, thank you”

Another parent gave feedback:

“Just to say a really big thank you for the dads’ afternoon we had. Everyone really enjoyed it. Further to this, we would like to be involved in further afternoons similar”

Due to the success of the project we have rolled this out further and funded a series of additional taster sessions and guided community walks to promote bonding and a better parental relationship. We see the importance and the need to carry on father engagement in this area and given that it was so well received we hope to bring this positive impact to more dads and children. Check back to our blog section in September for reports on how the follow up sessions were received.

For more information on current and past social return activities, navigate to our blog section on our website. Stay connected with us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and don’t forget to hit share if you like what we are doing for the communities around us.