Are you a dad with young children? If so, the Mental Health Foundation wants to hear from you. The Foundation has teamed up with Cardiff City FC Community Foundation and Cardiff University for a new project looking at the experiences of men as they become fathers.
Dads who get involved will have the opportunity to talk fatherhood and football, play five-a-side football at venues around Cardiff supported by Cardiff City FC Community Foundation.
Dads will be able to spend time sharing experiences with researchers about what it has been like for them to become fathers.
Adrian Green from the Mental Health Foundation, who runs the project said: “Having a child is a life-changing transition for men but there is remarkably little research around this. This is reflected in the lack of services currently available for new dads. “
“There has been a lot of focus on women’s experiences of becoming mothers; we think it’s important to understand more about what dads go through – the highs, the lows, everything around their life changing experiences and challenges. “
“We also want to help fathers who might be struggling to understand the changes in their lives and inform research and help influence change and services for dads too.”
Rob Abshal, a father who attended a focus group event run in conjunction with the Cardiff City FC Community Foundation said:
“To be a father is a great privilege, it can be amazing, educating, challenging and consuming but above all, it can be fun! This project is important; it seeks to understand and capture the different life changing experiences for a range of fathers as they become dads to better inform services in the future”
Simon Stephens, Programmes Director at Cardiff City FC Community Foundation said:
“Cardiff City FC Community Foundation is committed to working with members of our community and supporting them to lead healthier more active lives. We are delighted to be working with the Mental Health Foundation on this project and firmly believe that this presents a great opportunity to better understand how dads cope with the life changing transition to becoming fathers, bringing them all together using the unique appeal of Cardiff City FC”.
The Dads and Football project is aimed at fathers of young children; it will last until December 2020, with 5-a-side football sessions and up to 3 main events at the home of Cardiff City FC, the Cardiff City Stadium. The project is being funded by the Wellcome Trust and it is free to participating Dads.