Australian Government Strong Fathers Strong Families program—fact sheet

Australian Government Strong Fathers Strong Families program—fact sheet

Page last updated: 05 November 2013

What are the objectives of the Program?

The Strong Fathers Strong Families program is an Australian Government initiative to promote the role of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander fathers, partners, grandfathers and uncles, and encourage them to actively participate in their children’s and families’ lives, particularly in the antenatal period and early childhood development years.

What is the aim of the program?

  • Increase access by Indigenous males to culturally appropriate health services and antenatal, parenting and other related programs and health messages.
  • Improve Indigenous males’ ability to contribute positively to the health and wellbeing of the mother’s pregnancy and a nurturing and supportive family environment for the infant.
  • Support the developmental needs of children by encouraging fathers, uncles and grandfathers to be healthy role models and engage fully in the child’s life as early as possible, within the context of local community needs and cultural practices.

How much funding will the Program provide?

This Program commits $6.8 million (GST exclusive) from 2010-11 to 2013-14.

Organisations Receiving Strong Fathers Strong Families Funding

State/Territory and Organisation Name
New South Wales (NSW)
Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health Network (formerly Sydney West Area Health Service)
New England Medicare Local (formerly North West Slopes Division of General Practice)
Southern NSW Medicare Local (formerly Southern General Practice Network)
South Western Sydney Local Health District
Northern Territory
Danila Dilba Biluru Butji Binnilutlum Health Service Aboriginal Corporation
Laynhapuy Homelands Health
Miwatj Health Aboriginal Corporation
Queensland
Darling Downs Shared Care Incorporated T/A Carbal Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Services
Royal Flying Doctor Service—Queensland
South Australia
Nunkuwarrin Yunti of SA
Pangula Mannamurna Inc
Tullawon Health Service Inc
Watto Purranna – Adelaide Health Service

What types of activities are provided under the program?

In line with local community needs and cultural practices, organisations conduct a variety of activities under the program. These activities give Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander fathers and males increased access to:
  • male-inclusive and/or separate men’s antenatal programs to support males in preparing for fatherhood
  • community and group activities and strategies that promote positive, healthy, active fatherhood and grand-fatherhood, and the involvement of males in the early development of their children and grandchildren
  • health promotion information that promotes new fatherhood and grand-fatherhood as a motivating factor for self-care, and care for families and children
  • referral and support to attend local parenting, health and related services (e.g. reproductive health, family wellbeing, counselling, peer support groups) as needed.
This initiative also enables organisations to undertake planning to ensure the most appropriate strategies are developed to support Indigenous communities and families to address cultural beliefs and practices relating to male participation in antenatal, birthing and early childhood development.

How important are men in the lives of their babies and children?

Involving men in the lives of their children is crucial for the child’s health and well-being, and has a strong intergenerational effect. In particular, fathers provide a critical role model for their children; strengthening their identity; and increasing their resilience to adversity. A good relationship between fathers and children also has a positive impact on fathers themselves, their partners and their communities.

If Indigenous males continue to experience barriers to accessing primary health care, antenatal and parenting programs, their ability to contribute fully as fathers, grandfathers and other significant male relatives will be compromised and potential health, education and economic gains lost.

How does this program fit in the Male Health context?

The Strong Fathers Strong Families program is a component of the Building on the Strengths of Australian Males measure with total funding of $16.7 million (over four years from
2010-11).

Download a PDF version:
Strong Fathers Strong Familes - Fact Sheet (PDF 309 KB)


For further enquiries please email MothersandBabies@health.gov.au or phone 02 6289 5291.Top of page

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