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Case Study: fathers day event at thetford forest park, suffolk

Fathers Day Picture
An initiative outreach day aimed at single and absent fathers and their children.

Location & Issues:


Thetford Forest Park, Suffolk

An initiative outreach day aimed at single and absent fathers and their children. The day’s activity focused on playing skills, parenting skills and men’s health issues. The emphasis was on having fun with your children, learning to play and to build a positive relationship through play.

 

Main Partners:

Breckland District Council
Forestry Commission,
Forest Heath District Council
South Norfolk Primary Care Trust
Keystone Development Trust
Friends of Thetford Forest Park
Ipswich Town Football Club Community Trust
Norfolk County Youth Service
Sport England
Waitrose
Keystone and Wayland Walking for Health Initiative
Wayland Partnership
Weeting 21
Connexions (Thetford)
Sure Start
Community Music East.
Boots donated sunscreen and Sainsbury’s donated bottles of water.

 

Project Description:

The outreach day activities focused on playing skills, parenting skills and men’s health issues, having fun with your children, learning to play and building a positive relationship through play. The event aimed to help fathers and their children get the most out of the time they spend together.

The day, which was co-ordinated, by a group of partners, was timed to coincide with Men’s Health Week. It ties in with the Forestry Commission’s Active Woods campaign which aims to boost mind, body and spirit by getting people off their sofas and out into the fresh air.

There were nine ‘stations’ on the site where the families had ‘passports’ stamped on arrival. They enjoyed three football target games arranged by Ipswich Town FC Community Trust, a craft tent where the children made Fathers’ Day cards, puppets and windmills, and a music tent hosted by Community Music East where oil drums and pipes were transformed into musical instruments.

An Environmental Health Officer ran a hand wash point, where children could see the germs on their hands under an ultra-violet light, and a men’s health information point offered advice to dads.

A games field was busy all day with football, cricket, tennis, skipping, and rounders, and a storyteller rounded off the event with an interactive story.

Goody bags containing water bottles, Frisbees, men’s health information and sunscreen were handed out to all the visitors and a free barbecue provided snacks and even barbecue recipe books. Fresh fruit was provided by Waitrose.

A day out for six at Centre Centre Parcs, a day for four at Go Ape!, cycle hire for a family from Bike Art and a season ticket to High Lodge were among the prizes on offer in the prize draw.

 

Outcomes:

The day acheived the following:

  • Promoted awareness of men’s health issues and healthy lifestyles, including healthy eating and physical activity in the context of father and child relationships.

  • Demonstrate healthy and safe cooking skills.

  • Provided information on men’s health issues.

  • Aimed to signpost families and individuals to other support programmes in their locality.

A team of willing volunteers helped the day run smoothly