Unfortunately, for some people, the word father might mean an empty spot at the dinner table or a broken heart. Often, thinking about fathers can trigger emotions that range from deep love to a feeling of hopelessness.
Fathers’ Clubs make a huge impact on struggling communities in Uganda. They teach men how to love, nurture, and sacrifice for their wives and kids. If we can capture the hearts of fathers, we can transform families and communities.
Richard’s Parenting Classes
Bright Hope’s leadership team in Uganda recently celebrated fathers. Truly, Fathers’ Clubs have transformed their communities.
At the celebration, Richard, a Fathers’ Club leader, shared about his experience:
“When I was first approached by Bright Hope to lead a Fathers’ Club, my initial instinct was to decline. My marriage was on the verge of breaking. My wife constantly complained about our family income and how I spent money. But as a man, I felt obligated to adhere to our cultural norms where the man decides how to manage the family income. These circumstances made me hesitate and consider rejecting the leadership position.”
As Richard narrated his story, every ear at the Father’s Day celebration listened intently. The more than four hundred guests at the event were moved by his message. In a community previously ravaged by a two-decade civil war, it is remarkable to witness men who were once broken by the unrest now determined to spearhead change within their community. They have become champions of Bright Hope by helping to improve their community. Through the collaboration of seven local partner churches, seven Fathers’ Clubs have been established, boasting a total membership of 150 individuals.
These men received training on their responsibilities as fathers. As a result, they have implemented programs such as hygiene, sanitation, and educational empowerment. They have also invested in livelihood initiatives aimed at increasing family incomes through beekeeping, crop cultivation, fish farming, poultry, and piggery. These dads work to equip every household to promote disease prevention. In turn, this reduces the financial burden of medical expenses. Additionally, they engage in supplementary income-generating activities to uplift themselves from extreme poverty while advocating for marital practices that foster unity and cohesion.
Fathers Changes Uganda
Milton, a church leader and member of the Fathers’ Club shared his thoughts:
“As the Fathers’ Club, we extend our heartfelt appreciation to all those who have heeded our advice. Now we have proper latrines, well-maintained homes, and fewer diseases within our households. We are here to assist those who haven’t yet taken these steps. And we are always willing to lend a hand if you reach out to us.”
These seven Fathers’ Clubs have dedicated themselves to promoting family cohesion. For example, they come together to resolve disputes and conflicts within families. Consequentially, this has significantly reduced the number of domestic violence cases. So, fathers now actively engage with the community, urging all members to report any related cases to them.
Moreover, the fathers serve as role models for other men in the community, actively working and planning for their families’ development alongside their spouses. In addition, they shower their children with love and provide discipline when necessary. They utilize the proceeds from their agricultural endeavors and other income-generating activities to improve their families’ well-being and ensure their children receive an education.
To culminate their day of celebration, the fathers ate cake and engaged in a spirited soccer match. Most of all, they encouraged other men in the community to join them.
In conclusion, Richard recalled: “Since I took on the leadership of the Fathers’ Club, my family has undergone a remarkable transformation. Love now flourishes between my wife and me. Truly, all our children are attending school. You, too, can reap these benefits if you join us. Let us work together to bring about change in our community. The past should no longer define us.”
Help Us Help Fathers
To sum up, we would love your help to support families in Uganda. Please join us as we work to transform communities by empowering and caring for fathers.