James Levine writes about the Bay Area Male Involvement Network in his book, "Working Fathers." The network is a men's program in Northern California that involves father-figures in child care.
Stanley Seiderman, director of the BIAMN and of the Fairfax-San Anselmo Children's Center in California, said the program has seen an increased interaction between children and fathers.Once a month, the dads bring their children to a meeting and cook breakfast together and talk. Afterwards, they do an activity with the children, such as repair bikes, paint, hike, or have a ball game.
At one center, located in a drug-ridden neighborhood, the men formed a male-advocacy group. The group cleaned up the area around the center, then went to a City Council and convinced them to budget money for a police outpost near the center.
But the most important changes, Seiderman said, are the ones in the way the centers do business.
"When we have a conference with the parent, we set up a conference with both parents," Siederman said. "And we have changed our application form to include men's phone numbers and addresses. These are simple differences, but they have made profound changes."