Families Need Fathers

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Families Need Fathers
Families Need Fathers logo.png
Founded 1974
Founder Alick Elithorn and Keith Parkin
Type 1979 Ltd. UK
Focus Shared Parenting * English Family Law * Parental Alienation * Public Relations *
Key people
FNF currently has 8 employees
Slogan FNF is chiefly concerned with the problems of maintaining a child's relationship with both parents during and after family breakdown.
Website FNF Home

Families Need Fathers (FNF), founded in 1974, is a registered charitable organization in the United Kingdom that provides public awareness and support to parents who have become estranged from their children after a separation or divorce.[1]


Families Need Fathers was founded in May 1974 by child psychiatrist Alick Elithorn and financial consultant Keith Parkin as an organization to campaign for equal parenting rights.[2]

FNF became a registered charity in 1979, and now has more than 50 branches across the United Kingdom and continues to advocate shared parenting with the Media, House of Commons and the Family Justice Establishment while continuing its work as a social care organization.[3][4][5]


FNF is chiefly concerned with the problems of maintaining a child's relationship with both parents during and after family breakdown. The charity cites a study that shows roughly a third of all children from separated parents have no contact with their fathers in the United Kingdom.[6]

FNF-BPM Cymru[edit]

Families Need Fathers Both Parents Matter Cymru (FNFBPM Cymru) [7] is a separately registered charity that was set up to respond to changes affecting parents going through separation that may result from Welsh devolution.[8] For example, Wales has (CAFCASS) Cymru,[9] while England has (CAFCASS).

The National Manager of the charity is Paul Apreda who amongst other things coordinates support meetings across Wales and seeks to develop the infrastructure of the charity to provide assistance to increasing numbers of people.

In 2011 FNFBPM Cymru ran a competition in South Wales looking for a "superdad", with a £500 prize for the winner.[10][11] It was followed the next year by the "Inspirational Wales Dad of the Year Award" at Ty Hywel in Cardiff Bay.[12]
In 2013 the Charity held a Dinner to celebrate fathers with Louis de Bernieres as the guest speaker. In the last year, the Charity has hosted lectures on Parental Alienation with Karen Woodall one of the world experts in the subject in Cardiff and in Llandudno Junction for professionals working in the family law arena to attend.
Following funding from Cardiff City Council the charity has produced a booklet "A guide for school professionals... working with fathers and other non resident parents"
There are support groups that meet once a month in Cardiff, Aberystwyth, Bangor, Blackwood, Bridgend, Merthyr, Newport, Swansea and Wrexham. A new group is due to start in St Clares this year. In Cardiff there is also a once monthly emotional support group led by a professional counselor. It also provides a telephone helpline and emotional support for parents and other family members dealing with issues relating to separation from their children.

Support meetings include a wide range of people - not just fathers. Increasingly (and thought by some as a result to the changes in Legal Aid eligibility) volunteers are supporting grandparents and mothers (both resident and non resident) who are seeking assistance in dealing with emotional and legal support.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Families Need Fathers Limited". Charity Commission. 31 January 2012. 
  2. ^ Logue, Hugh (30 July 2010). "Interview with Jon Davies, outgoing CEO of Families Need Fathers". familylaw.co.uk. 
  3. ^ O'Sullivan, Jack (13 June 2012). "Fathers finally get equal access rights ...". The Guardian. 
  4. ^ "Professional groups welcome the key proposals of the Family Justice Review". Family Law Week. 13 June 2012. 
  5. ^ Owen, Cathy (14 June 2011). "Dads made to feel part of the family". South Wales Echo. 
  6. ^ Bingham, John (16 November 2009). "Third of family break-up children lose contact with fathers in 'failing' court system, poll". The Telegraph. 
  7. ^ "Families Need Fathers Both Parents Matter Cymru". Charity Commission. .gov.uk. 5 October 2011. 
  8. ^ Gilipin, Andrew (1 January 2010). "South African starts support group". Daily Post. 
  9. ^ "(CAFCASS) Cymru". .gov.uk. 
  10. ^ "Families Need Fathers is looking for South Wales' Superdad 2011". South Wales Echo. The Free Library. 14 June 2011. 
  11. ^ Owen, Cathy (16 June 2011). "Superdad nominee Stephen is already a winner at home". Pontypridd Observer. 
  12. ^ Forrester, Kate (15 June 2012). "Flintshire father wins 'Inspirational Dad of the Year' award". Daily Post. 

External links[edit]