Dad Matters, a Home-Start Oldham Stockport and Tameside project, works across Greater Manchester to support dads during their child’s early years. They help to support wellbeing and access to services.
Dad Matters have moved services online, with a Dad Chat LIVE on Facebook every Wednesday at 6pm, with discussions around baby’s development, consoling, sleep, parents wellbeing and accessing services.
Dad Matters Volunteers (or Dad Champions) usually host Dad Chat groups within antenatal classes or during outreach in antenatal and postnatal clinics. Due to social distancing measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, dads can no longer be reached in person at clinics.
Currently Dads aren’t able to be with their partners/spouses during antenatal appointments, or sometimes during the first stages of labour but still want to be close to offer support. This has led to a number of dads waiting outside maternity centres or in their cars. Dad Matters have been working with Maternity Services in Bolton to develop a solution to engage with dads at such a pivotal time and have developed the pilot of pop-up stalls.
The mobile stall will be located outside maternity centres, following all social distancing and hygiene guidelines and will be manned by experienced and approachable staff and volunteers. Dads will be able to discuss any aspect pregnancy, birth and beyond with the team, access useful information and can be signposted to additional services if appropriate.
The pop ups at Bolton were June 10th and 12th and there are plans extend this service to other hospitals in the region; starting with Salford, Rochdale and Tameside.
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