WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE 28/WYOU 22 EYEWITNESS NEWS) — Parenting isn’t always easy, even in the best of circumstances. But the rewards of good parenting can be far-reaching and long-lasting.
That’s the message behind a new campaign encouraging more fathers to play an active role in their children’s lives. The campaign is called #Dadication. It aims to inspire more men to be dedicated dads to help improve their children’s health and development.
“You see certain things get reincarnated in your children.”
The voice you hear in this #Dadication PSA is that of Durrell Brown. Along with his wife, Brown works to create an environment to help his two children thrive even though parenting can be challenging.
“You just keep showing up every day. You know, showing up is half the battle. You know, there’s no rule book on how to do this. You know, we’re all just trying to figure this out,” Brown said.
Brown says he’s trying to figure it out as the son of an uninvolved father which he blames on his struggle for self-validation.
“Oftentimes, I’m trying to make sure I did something right. I did this correctly. And I know that comes from me, A, not having a dad in the household which is one less person saying good job. You know, one less person saying keep going. One less person encouraging you,” Brown said.
“The research is really clear that when children have their fathers positively engaged in their lives, the health outcomes are better, academic performance is higher, behavioral issues decrease,” ICF Senior Fatherhood & Families Specialist Eugene Schneeberg said.
That can translate into less crime in our communities and make for more productive young men and women.
“The issues related to fatherhood cut across issues of, you know, socio-economic background, class, culture, race, you name it. Being a dad is something that’s common to all people,” Schneeberg said.
As we emerge from the pandemic and return to more activities outside the home, the #Dadication campaign encourages fathers of growing families to take an active role in their children’s lives.
“If there’s anything better than being beautiful, it’s being smart. And if there’s anything better than being smart, it’s being kind. And reaffirming that every day is our method of making sure her chin never drops,” Brown said in the PSA.
According to 2020 U.S. Census data, two million more children live in a home with a father present compared to a decade earlier. Regardless, experts say dads being more present will lead to happier and healthier children.
National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse offers free resources for dads. Everything from activity ideas with your children to tips on helping with schoolwork. For more information, visit fatherhood.gov.