Fathers’ Mental Health: Reducing Addressable Barriers to Parenting and Program Engagement

What are fathers’ experiences with mental health? How does the transition to fatherhood affect fathers’ mental health? How can practitioners engage fathers and respond to mental health symptoms appropriately? In Fathers’ Mental Health: Reducing Addressable Barriers to Parenting and Program Engagement, Dr. John Holmberg guides the audience through these questions. Dr. Holmberg is a clinical psychologist who trained at Baylor University prior to completing a clinical fellowship at the Yale University Child Study Center. Dr. Holmberg was a research collaborator on several preventive intervention programs (e.g., Nurse-Family Partnership, Fostering Healthy Futures) in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Colorado Denver for 13-years. Throughout his career, he has maintained a strong research interest in preventive and clinical interventions, men’s mental health, father involvement in community-based programs, techniques to support the transition to fatherhood and interventions for perinatal mental health conditions. Most recently, Dr. Holmberg joined the faculty of the University of Denver’s Graduate School of Professional Psychology where he focuses on the development of research and clinical programs to address mental health issues affecting fathers as part of the Infancy and Early Childhood Mental Health Specialty.


Recruitment: The Key to Retention

Want to learn more about how to engage fathers in programming? Or about how to implement effective strategies for recruiting and retaining fathers in your program? What makes up a “father friendly” practice? Recruitment: The Key to Retention focuses on strategies for recruitment and retention and will also look at what makes up father-friendly practices in family organizations. The webinar presenter is Ken Sanders. Mr. Sanders was the Director of the Center on Fathering for nearly 23 years, until his retirement in 2018. He presided over the development, growth, and administration of a unique program that aids fathers in becoming actively involved in their children’s growth. In addition, Mr. Sanders has nearly 30 years of experience working in Child Welfare. Ken is a fatherhood consultant for the State of Colorado, working with other programs around the state of Colorado to develop or enhance their own fatherhood services.  He is the only Certified Master Trainer of the Nurturing Fathers curriculum in the state of Colorado. Mr. Sanders has served as Chair of the Colorado Practitioners Network for Fathers and Families.

Building Cooperative Components in Fatherhood Assets

Does fatherhood affect men’s social capital? Can programs and providers help develop social capital for fathers? What are the strategies to help develop social capital for fathers? Building Cooperative Components in Fatherhood Assets is presented by Dwayne Meeks. Dwayne Meeks is the founder and serves as Executive Director of award-winning fatherhood program Urban Colors Arts and Mentoring and the President and Chair of the Colorado African American Drug Policy Coalition. Meeks is an influential voice in the Fathers Rights Movement and serves as a National adviser to several fatherhood organization on across the country. Meeks is a husband and father of five has more than twenty-seven years of experience in public service. Meeks is committed to encouraging more grounded families and communities through the advancement of fatherhood engagement codes of responsible behavior and add to the sound prosperity of their kids. Mr. Meeks can be heard by national and international agencies through conferences and conversations expressing powerful learning lessons with authentic compassion, inspiration and hope about family, life, and purpose linking the asset framework to organizational and community efforts!

How Low-Income Fathers in Colorado Fare in Three Policy Areas: Child Support, Parenting Time, and Responsible Fatherhood

Want to learn about how Colorado’s policies affect fathers and families in three key areas (child support, family law, and responsible fatherhood), and how these policies can influence your work as an organization, program, and practitioners? How Low-Income Fathers in Colorado Fare in Three Policy Areas: Child Support, Family Law, and Responsible Fatherhood offers an opportunity to learn more about an upcoming larger project, “State-by-State- Report on Father Policies and Programs” through the Center for Policy Research.

Jessica Pearson, Ph.D., is the Founder and Director of the Center for Policy Research (CPR), a nonprofit research firm in Denver, Colorado. She is also co-director of the National Fatherhood Research and Practice Network (FRPN), which was formerly funded by OPRE to promote rigorous evaluation of fatherhood programs and to provide technical assistance to fatherhood researchers and practitioners. Jessica has worked with the Colorado Department of Human Services, Office of Child Support Services for over three decades to implement and evaluate more than 25 demonstration projects on “father-friendly” and family-centered programs.

After two and a half years of working with child support enforcement, Jeff Thompson went to work for the Jefferson County Fatherhood/Parenthood Program in early 2016. Jeff is a facilitator trainer for the Nurturing Fathers curriculum, and he developed, wrote, and implemented Jefferson County’s Constructive Co-Parenting program. In July 2021, Jeff accepted a position as the Fatherhood Program Administrator within the state Office of Economic Security, housed in the Division of Child Support Services