We are delighted to announce that the Following Young Fathers Further team has expanded! Dr Michael Richardson, Newcastle University and the North East Young Dads and Lads Project based in Gateshead have agreed to join the team so that we can research the impacts of Covid-19 on a wider national cohort of young dads and with another national organisation. Michael is a Lecturer in Human Geography and has longstanding research interests in masculinities and intergenerational relationships. He has been a Trustee of the North East Young Dads and Lads Project since 2018 and is currently conducting a research evaluation of their “Teen Dads” work which has been funded by BBC Children In Need (learn more about this work here).
These new developments represent an important new phase of the Following Young Fathers Further (FYFF) study. Since the lockdown was imposed in March 2020, the FYFF team has been exploring ways of ethically researching and capturing the effects of the Covid-19 crisis on the lives of young fathers, as well as the organisations who support them. As a qualitative longitudinal study, FYFF is well placed to capture the impacts of the evolving crisis and associated policy responses as they impact on the parenting journeys of young men over time. In a previous blog, we announced that we have also joined a national consortium of researchers as part of a Nuffield funded study to examine the impacts of the crisis on low-income families.
We have continued to work closely with our national project partners Coram Family and Childcare, NSPCC Grimsby and YMCA Humber to understand how they have adapted their support and to gain their perspective on how the pandemic has affected the young fathers they support. We discuss some of these early findings in Discover Society and the Centre for Research on Families and Relationships blog).
The new collaborations with Michael and the North East Young Dads and Lads project will enable us to build a more comprehensive and extended national picture of the impacts of the crisis on young fathers and national organisations. These new partnerships represent a significant step in enhancing national collaboration, strengthening the developing evidence base about young fathers and their support needs, and ensuring that the voices and experiences of young fathers remain visible and appropriately responded to.