Networks: Virtual Support for Real Dad Issues
According to the latest studies, more Canadian dads are choosing to be stay-at-home dads (SAHDs), and modern fathers are spending substantially more time with their kids, becoming more involved in their activities and development–stuff that a decade ago was more “Mom stuff”. Being a dad is a big responsibility with huge rewards, and just like any other big responsibility, the more support and help we have, the easier it becomes. In this age of social networks and online friendships, Canadian dads have more options and resources than ever. Here are some unique and helpful virtual resources for dads in Canada.
OttowaatHomeDads.This Ottawa-based group is for SAHD’s, and offers a ton of resources, including meetups, playdate coordination, member discussion forums, a member database, and announcements of upcoming kid-friendly events.
Dad Central/Papa Centrale (Ontario). This super-helpful site has links to slews of Dad-focused parenting information (in print and online, English and French), forums, and more, all for free.
AbbyDadds. In the Abbotsford area, this excellent organization gives local dads access to programs, activities and support for Abbotsford dads. The group organizes playgroups, educational resources, parenting resources, legal advice, group and individual support, and more.
Father Involvement Research Alliance (FIRA). According to its website, FIRA is “dedicated to the development and sharing of knowledge focusing on father involvement.” There are several subgroups of resources for fathers of all kinds (married, single, GLBT, Indigenous, etc.), parenting resources, and the opportunity to be involved in various national and international research studies on fatherhood and parenting.
My Daddy Matters Because… The motto for this organization is “Fatherhood: the best job on the planet” and describes itself as “also known as the National Project Fund on Fathering that is funded by Health Canada’s National Project Fund. The primary purpose of this site is to provide information for people who are developing and managing Father programs in their communities.” It offers access to activities, services, resources, and programs that exist for fathers coast-to-coast. The organization of the User Index allows the user to search for information either by geographic location of the activities, services, resources, and programs or by the type of father that is served.
Father Involvement Network. Part of the BC Council for Families, the BC-FIN is a network for professional men who are also fathers. According to its website, BC-FIN “serves as a place where professionals from across the province can work together to support fathers as they navigate how to become involved and what it means to father today. We connect professionals to best practice methods and strategies. As a province-wide network, FIN advocates for the advancement of father engagement in family services, and active, positive fathering in the home.”