Fathers and Daughters: Six Tips for Including Fathers
Fathers, we salute you and the pivotal role you play in the lives of your daughters! A father’s relationship with his daughter has tremendous effects on her mental health, her adult relationships, and even how she deals with stress. Need more information on how important this relationship is to girls? Check out this article from Medical Daily with links to current research on the topic.
As an organization that focuses on girls we’re 100% committed to helping build positive relationships that shape the women of tomorrow, and that includes fathers, too! So how do we give fathers and daughters more chances to build this important relationship with Girl Scouts? We’ve got some great ideas for you!
1. Invite fathers to join the fun as a volunteer!
Women may be the majority of our volunteers, but we’ve got fathers who lead troops, volunteer at events and day camps, drive for field trips, and act as cookie coordinators. With so many ways to volunteer, he’s sure to find something that he’ll enjoy!
2. Host a father/daughter event!
Plan an event in your local service unit or just for your troop using our handy Event Planning Guide that creates a fun environment for fathers and daughters to spend time together. Try a fishing derby, Me and My Guy dance, or keep it simple with a Dad and Daughter hike. No need to get super elaborate, the together part matters most.
3. Invite fathers to share their careers with girls.
What an awesome and often untapped resource for troop activities fathers can be. We’ve heard great stories about fathers who took their daughter’s troop on behind the scenes tours of factories, court houses, and restaurants. Grandfather’s who hosted a troop picnic at their farm and introduced the girls to all kinds of farm animals. Even dads who came to troop meetings and talked about what it means to be a civil engineer, then helped the girls build Lego bridges. What a great resource for our girls!
4. Promote Father-Daughter council program events!
For these, you don’t have to plan a thing, just help spread the word and get the fathers there with their girls. Check the GSWO Event list this fall and search for “father” to find these special themed events!
5. Invite fathers as a guest speaker at a troop meeting.
Ask them to give their input on sensitive topics like bullying and self-esteem or if you’re working on skill building badges, ask the fathers in your troop if they have skills in that area to share. You just might be surprised at the insights and talents of the fathers in your troop.
6. Remember not every girl has an active father in her life.
Be sure to make it known that any activities for fathers are open to girls AND a positive male role model in their lives. It could be a grandparent or uncle who is able to step up and be that important male role model for a special Girl Scout in his life.
Ready to ask the fathers in your troop to join the fun? Are they man enough to be a Girl Scout? We need you, Fathers, to join with us as we build courageous girls who will change our world!