Fatherhood / Male Involvement Facts

What Does Fatherhood/Male Involvement Mean?

Fatherhood/male involvement is often defined as consisting of three primary components:

Interaction:
The father engages with the child in play, reading, talking, doing homework, and other activities.
Availability:
The father is accessible and present in the child's life and makes them a priority.
Responsibility:
The father ensures that the child is financially and emotionally supported, safe, and happy.

When the father is absent from a child's life, the subsequent lack of the father's interaction, availability, and responsibility is a contributing reason for the child being less successful later in life.

Active fatherhood/male involvement during the prenatal to five period is critical for the future well-being of a child. Since this is a critical developmental stage and outcomes at age 5 are highly predictive of a child's subsequent development, it is paramount that systems of care include policies and programs that will promote the healthy development of children during this important period of their lives.