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Fathers play a critical role in childhood learning

A physiotherapist from Lira, Uganda, plays with his 22-month-old son outside their residence at a hospital compound in Napak, Karamoja, eastern Uganda.
A physiotherapist from Lira, Uganda, plays with his 22-month-old son outside their residence at a hospital compound in Napak, Karamoja, eastern Uganda. Photo credit: UNICEF/Ose
16 June 2017 – A majority of children aged between three- and four-years-old in 74 countries, or about 40 million, have fathers who do not play or engage in early learning activities with them, according to a new study released today by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).

“What these numbers show us is that father's are struggling to play an active role in their children's early years,” said Laurence Chandy, UNICEF Director of Data, Research and Policy, in a statement on the study, released as some 80 countries around the world are set to celebrate Father's Day this coming Sunday.

“We must break down the barriers that prevent fathers from providing their babies and young children a conducive environment for them to thrive, including love, play, protection and nutritious food,”

Laurence Chandy
UNICEF Director of Data, Research and Policy

The UNICEF analysis examined whether children aged three and four engaged in any play and early learning activities with their fathers, such as having their father read to the children, tell them stories or sing with them; taking them outside, playing with them; and naming, counting or drawing with them.

[ read the full story ]

Last modified on Friday, 16 June 2017 20:21
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