On Wednesday 28th April 2021 we ran a sharing and learning webinar where we launched several new resources and research findings based on a recently concluded community led research study called ‘Diverse Dads’.
Diverse Dads was a collaborative project between the North East Young Dads and Lads Project (NEYDL) and the Following Young Fathers Further team based at the University of Lincoln. The project, which was funded by the University of Lincoln QR Strategic fund and NEYDL, was also supported by advisory members Connected Voice and FutureMen. An innovative peer and community led approach to research was employed that involved supporting young men and fathers to conduct research about support provision in their region. The project aimed to address a community identified gap in knowledge about how services might reach and support more young fathers from minoritised communities in the North East of England.
The findings challenge common assumptions that young fathers are ‘hard-to-reach’ and that localities are lacking in diversity. The peer research team found that understanding local demographics, mapping local and regional resources and building new partnerships with community leaders and across services are important steps in ensuring services are more accessible to young dads, especially those that are minoritised. When professionals listen actively to young fathers they can better understand them and develop a tailored and responsive approach that empowers them.
Multiple outputs have been produced from the study including training videos for professionals and two research reports. Foregrounding the voices and experiences of young fathers from diverse communities, alongside regional organisations in the North East who support them, the reports present cutting-edge findings and recommendations about how services might develop more inclusive support and outreach for a diverse constituency of young men who become fathers under the age of 25 years old.
Training videos produced by DigiDAD (please subscribe here) and a recording of the webinar are available on the Diverse Dads tab of the Following Young Fathers Further website. You can also access them using the links below.
The peer research team:
Please also follow the project on Twitter for future updates: @FollowingYFF.