The Expectant Fathers Programme (EFP) has been developed in the UK and is evidence based with the input and guidance of UK fathers with special attention given to accessing hard to reach fathers and carers. It is currently the longest running fully evaluated programme for expectant fathers in the UK and is only available through Working with Men.
This course has been designed side by side with expectant fathers who have provided critical input during its evaluation and further development. The sessions are an opportunity for men to reflect on the changes they will be going through and the impact that a baby will have on their lives.
The EFP is directly related to the health needs of babies, mothers and fathers. Evidence suggests that when fathers are expecting their first child, they read more about parenting, and are more willing to seek advice. Evidence has shown that the more fathers engage with their babies, the more they will bond and the more likely their relationships with their children will be sustained over years, in spite of divorce or separation. (Charlie Lewis and Jo Warin, 2001)
Fathers Are Important!
Fathers are now viewed as an integral part of the birthing and parenting journey. Maternity Matters: Choice, access and continuity of care in a safe service (DOH, 2007), The Fatherhood Institute and the National Childbirth Trust (NCT), Involving Fathers in Maternity Care all strongly advocate fathers active involvement and encourage services to target and engage fathers
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Benefits of father’s involvement
Numerous studies have shown that when men assume active roles in raising their children, they play a critical part in enhancing and facilitating child growth and development (see Pleck & Masciadrelli, 2004 for a review). Recent research has suggested that both the quantity and quality of father-child interaction during the early childhood years can lead to more positive social developments (Frosch, Cox and Goldman, 2001), fewer behavioural problems (Jaffee, Moffitt, Caspi & Taylor, 2003), greater emotional self regulation (Roggman, Boyce, Cook, Christiansen & Jones, 2004), increased language development (Magill-Evans & Harrison, 2001) and greater cognitive functioning (Gauvain, Fagot, Lee & Kavanagh, 2002) for young children.