D.N.A YOUNG FATHERHOOD INITIATIVE
"Developing Devoted, Noble and Accountable Fathers"
The D.N.A. Young Fatherhood Initiative is a life skills and parenting program, implemented by the Community Council of Metropolitan Atlanta, Inc. (CCMA) in 2012 to develop and maintain positive, productive, strong and meaningful relationships between young fathers and their children, focusing on the CCMA fatherhood components: "Devotion, Nobility, and Accountability". The program is designed to equip young fathers, between the ages of 18-28, with life skills and resources to become devoted, noble and accountable fathers.
Four strategies are used within the D.N.A. Fatherhood Initiative to prepare young men for responsible fatherhood, including (1) outreach workshops; (2) a 12-week fatherhood academy; (3) the Man-2-Man Mentoring Program and (4) a counseling and referral center.
1. "The Real D.N.A. for Young Fathers"
Fatherhood workshops are conducted at public libraries and other venues in economically marginalized communities, based on the D.N.A. Young Fatherhood model developed by Norma Joy Barnes, founder of the Priority Male Initiative. These free workshops also provide critical educational and vocational information and resources to young fathers in the targeted age group.
2. "Young Fatherhood Academy
The Young Fatherhood Academy (YFA) is a 12- week curriculum that includes personal assessments, structured classes, workshops, mentoring and other activities. During the 12-week session, participants are provided training in personal management, ethics and social responsibility, interpersonal relationships, goal setting, fatherhood/parenting, conflict resolution, communication skills, financial literacy, money management, career development and other life skills.
3. Man-2-Man Mentoring Program
Participants are assigned male mentors, on a one-on-one basis, to help them navigate their journey toward responsible manhood and create sustainable and positive changes in their lives.
4. Counseling and Referral Center
A counseling and referral center is available to young fathers, the mothers of their children, and other critical family members. Services include assessment, career and personal counseling, and referrals to other community resources and services.
The D.N.A Fatherhood Initiative is free of charge to participants. In addition to the above services, CCMA partners with local businesses and organizations to provide clothing, employment and other resources to D.N.A. Young Fatherhood Academy trainees. YFA graduates, who are offered employment with one of the program's partners, will receive continued support from the CCMA in the form of one-on-one coaching in work ethics, personal development, quality assurance, and other career skills.
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