The child support program is one of the few government programs that systematically reach men, and the only one to do so in their roles as fathers. Because the program serves so many childrenâa quarter of all children and half of all poor childrenâand both their parents throughout childhood, it is uniquely positioned to connect men to a range of resources to help them be the fathers they want to be.Â
Across the country, child support programs are finding innovative new ways to help fathers provide for their children. State and local child support agencies have engaged in outreach, referral, case management and other activities in partnership with fatherhood, workforce, veterans, reentry, and asset-building programs to increase the ability of parents to support their children. They are working to engage fathers in the lives of their children, to increase noncustodial parent employment, to improve family relationships, and to address family violence prevention.Â
The OCSE âbubble chartâ promotes the child support programâs vision for a more holistic family-centered approach to service delivery. Our collaborations with other public agencies and community organizations in the six domains of the bubble chart are enhancing the success of our programâs fundamental mission to reinforce the responsibility of parents to support their children when they live apart and to encourage fathers and mothers to be involved in their childrenâs lives.Â
OCSE reconfirms our commitment to fatherhood issues through participation in a range of federal interagency initiatives, including six listed on page 3 in the June Child Support Report.
This month, the Child Support Report also brings you voices of fathersâleaders of three national organizationsâwho discuss their views on fatherhood. Four other articles look at research and state perspectives about unwed parents in our program. Several highlight the need for more services that target fathers across the country and point out efforts that are showing signs of success. All of the articlesâplus another (on page 8) about a North Carolina county partnership with the local libraryâdemonstrate the child support programâs obligation to speak out about our commitment to fatherhood issues.
We have a long way to go, but our collaborative work at every level of government and with community organizations strengthens our important message that the child support program is here to help parents, children, and families.
Happy Fatherâs Day to all!