Fatherhood Initiatives: Connecting Fathers to Their Children

Fatherhood Initiatives: Connecting Fathers to Their Children. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. Carmen Solomon-Fears, Jessica Tollestrup. December 28, 2016

In 2016, while the majority of children in the United States lived in families with two parents (69%), an estimated 27% of children were maintained in one-parent homes. Of children in one-parent homes, an estimated 85% were in homes maintained by the mother only. Research indicates that children raised in single-parent families are more likely than children raised in two-parent families (with both biological parents) to do poorly in school, have emotional and behavioral problems, become teenage parents, and have poverty-level incomes. In hopes of improving the long-term outlook for children in single-parent families, federal, state, and local governments, along with public and private organizations, are supporting programs and activities that promote the financial and personal responsibility of noncustodial fathers to their children and increase the participation of fathers in the lives of their children. These programs have come to be known as “responsible fatherhood” programs.

[PDF format, 34 pages, 815.28 KB].

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Fatherhood Initiatives: Connecting Fathers to Their Children

Fatherhood Initiatives: Connecting Fathers to Their Children. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. Carmen Solomon-Fears. November 10, 2015.

In 2014, almost 25% of families with children (under age 18) were maintained by mothers. According to some estimates, about 50% of children born in the United States will spend a significant portion of their childhood in a home without their biological father. Research indicates that children raised in single-parent families are more likely than children raised in two-parent families (with both biological parents) to do poorly in school, have emotional and behavioral problems, become teenage parents, and have poverty-level incomes. In hopes of improving the long-term outlook for children in single-parent families, federal, state, and local governments, along with public and private organizations, are supporting programs and activities that promote the financial and personal responsibility of noncustodial fathers to their children and increase the participation of fathers in the lives of their children. These programs have come to known as “responsible fatherhood” programs.

[PDF format, 33 pages, 818.9 KB].