Celebrating and Honoring Dads this Father’s Day (and every other day!)

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Happy Father’s Day to all Skagit Dads!

Skagit County Public Health and the partners of the Washington Fatherhood Council send you our best wishes on this Father’s Day. This day is set aside specially for you. We want to take a moment to honor the amazing role you play in the success of your children, your family, and your community.  

We believe that every day should be Father’s Day. Fathers and father figures play an important role in the development and success of their child(ren), families, and communities. Parenting is joyful and an important part of who we are. Our children deserve to be cherished by both parents and to have both parents actively supporting and guiding their development. That’s why we should celebrate fathers every day by welcoming them to the table and valuing their role in families in maximizing human potential in the current and the next generation.

Fathers are essential to their child’s well-being and success, whether they live with their child every day or only see them part-time. Enabling that relationship and nurturing that success is a big part of the Washington Fatherhood Council’s mission.

The impacts a father’s presence can have on his child’s life have been proven time and time again. The birth of a child has been called a “magic moment” when fathers — including unmarried fathers — are present in their children’s lives, and both mothers and fathers are optimistic about their future together, as noted in a Princeton University study.

A father’s involvement in the care of their child has also been shown to enhance father-infant attachment, which leads to better outcomes for both children and their mothers, according to a Northwestern University study. Having a father positively involved in a child’s life means children experience better birth outcomes, more positive social emotional development, and better success in school, as well as less poverty over the course of their lifetime.

In spite of fathers’ initial enthusiasm for becoming parents and the positive outcomes associated with their involvement, fathers are often excluded from services and other parenting supports from their child’s birth. They often report feeling powerlessness and discounted when seeking services for their children. Despite the initial high hopes, by the time children are 5 years old, many parents’ relationships have dissolved, leaving fathers disengaged from their children’s lives.

These early, formative years of parenthood present a perfect opportunity to support and engage fathers who may be experiencing difficulty in feeling like an important part of their family. The Washington Fatherhood Council is here to amplify the voices of those fathers, who often experience high levels of stress in becoming a dad.

Resources and New Opportunities for Skagit Dads

The Council hosts a monthly virtual Dads Connect time where you can meet other dads, add your voice, and explore topics facing dads. Skagit County Public Health and Help Me Grow-Skagit are also working to create more welcoming systems and supports for fathers in Skagit County.

We now have an online learning experience made just for dads available through our Help Me Grow Skagit Family Resource Center. Fathering in 15 is an Interactive, online tool that helps people build the knowledge and skills they need to be the best dads they can be anytime, anywhere. There are 15 topics that are 15 minutes each.

Dad and Me at CMSC: New special sessions for fathers/father figures and their children at the Children’s Museum of Skagit County on the last Saturday of each month, beginning June 24, from 9am to 10am. Dads and their children can enjoy the museum with no admission charge from 9am to 10am. After 10am, regular rates will apply.

If you have ideas for how our community can better support dads, we welcome your input! Please comment on this blog post to share your ideas or email Jennifer Sass-Walton at jennis@co.skagit.wa.us.

Enjoy your day – you earned it, dads! We see you, and we appreciate you!

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