Movers + Shakers, People of LoganFebruary 15, 2024 / 3 minute read

Bonding over babies and fatherhood

In an upcoming program, men will be brought together to bond over what may be one of the greatest challenges of their lives: becoming a dad.

This is Rad Dads, a 3-week program by local business Big Little Wins, that equips new fathers with important parenting skills.

Big Little Wins offers weekly workshops for parents to build new connections, learn from experts and connect with their babies.

Founder Cassie Arrowgros says while mums have plenty of choice when it comes to parenting support groups, dads are often left out of the equation.

Rad Dads was designed to bridge the gap for an increasing number of fathers who want to be more involved in parenting – but are unsure about where to start.

‘I didn’t want this to feel like a mums’ group for dads, so the program focuses on practical skills that will help them feel more confident about care-giving and playing an active role,’ Cassie says.

Under the watchful eye of subject experts, participants will bring their babies to learn baby CPR, when and how to introduce solid food, how to strengthen the father-infant bond and more.

Cassie’s husband Jim, a children’s dietitian and chef, will be facilitating the sessions.

He says the biggest challenge for many fathers is connecting to their new life stage.

‘A lot of fathers, including myself, feel a disconnect when going back to work because it’s like you have 2 lives going on – everything goes back to normal at work but that doesn’t happen for the rest of your family,’ he says.

‘By connecting with other dads going through the same thing, you feel less alone during the adjustment period.’

The program will also provide participants with a safe space to share their experiences with others on the same journey.

‘Even though dads often hold back on sharing their struggles with their wives, it doesn’t take away from how valid their experiences are,’ Cassie says.

‘Men also need that support network, and we think that’ll develop naturally through shared activities and experiences.’

Thanks to Council’s First 5 Forever team, Rad Dads will also be the first free Big Little Wins program.

First 5 Forever is a Queensland Government initiative that aims to provide a strong foundation for children aged zero to 5 through literacy programs and more.

‘With the support of the incredible First 5 Forever team, I’ve been able to get this program off the ground much faster than I ever thought possible,’ Cassie says.

‘And the fact that it is completely free for the dads is a massive bonus.

‘The only way we can create that cultural shift for men and how they approach fatherhood is by putting more of these programs and learning opportunities out there.’

Rad Dads is open for all new dads with babies 0 to 6 months old. The program kicks off on 9 March at Kingston Butter Factory Cultural Precinct.

For more information, visit the Big Little Wins website.

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