The Caring Dads Programme is a 17-week group work programme for fathers who have displayed unhealthy, hurtful, abusive and neglectful fathering behaviours.
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Incorporating cognitive behavioural theory, the programme encourages fathers to explore the beliefs and intentions underlying their abusive fathering, helping them to recognise the impact of their behaviour and re build trust with their children.
In cases involving domestic abuse, the programme promotes the safety and well-being of children and their mothers through effective coordinated intervention and risk management. Within sessions, fathers are challenged to address their abusive behaviour against their children’s mothers. The programme is not an alternative to a Domestic Violence Perpetrator Programme. The programme has a robust evidence base, reported by the programme designers in Canada, and the NSPCC in the UK.
The aims of the Caring Dads programme are to:
- Develop sufficient trust and motivation to engage men in the process of examining their fathering;
- Increase men’s awareness of child-centered fathering;
- Increase men’s awareness of, and responsibility for, abusive & neglectful fathering behaviours and their impact on children;
- Consolidate learning, rebuild trust and plan for the future.
There are several programme principles which guide all activities and have implications for how the programme is delivered. These are that:
- Priority must be given to the safety and well-being of children;
- Children’s safety and well-being is intrinsically connected to that of their mothers;
- Intervention must be prepared to address clients whose motivation for change may be low;
- Focus needs to be on promotion of child centered fathering rather than on building child-management skills;
- Because abusive fathers have eroded their children’s emotional security, the need to rebuild trust will affect the pace of change and potential impact of relapse on the child.
RISE Domestic Abuse Safety Advisors (DASA’s) are trained specialists who offer support to individuals who have experienced domestic abuse. Every time RISE facilitators work with a father on a programme addressing domestic abuse, they will ensure that support is offered to the mother. A safety service provision is compulsory to support the programme.
For further details on the Caring Dads programme, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.