Ideas for Action

Nicolas Zogg

The Swiss Father’s Day is about celebrating the countless little ways fathers engage with their children. Rather than just focussing on thanking fathers for their care work, this day of action invites everyone to playfully engage with all facets of fatherhood and the father-child relationship. We have put together a list of a few ideas—for you to replicate in your community or to inspire you to come up with your own way of celebrating Father’s Day in a dignified fashion.

Fathers’ Stories

The project “Fathers’ Stories” was developed by Mark Riklin for the sixth annual Father’s Day 2012 at the request of FamOS [Families of East Switzerland] and männer.ch. Mark is the founder of the online platform “Meldestelle für Glücksmomente” [Office for Happy Moments]. Fathers’ Stories asked men, women, and children in public forums and selected company venues to share memories of their fathers, grandfathers, or their own experiences of fatherhood. Since then, fathers’ stories have been collected and archived in various places. The concept of fathers’ stories is well-suited for developing actions centered around Father’s Day, as these stories showcase the diverse forms fatherhood can take and encourages men to make use of their time for fatherly engagements.

To browse the archive of fathers’ stories and find additional information, visit: www.vaetergeschichten.ch

 

Letters to Dad

There have been multiple instances of children coming together (in school or other venues) to write letters to their dads, with the aim of explaining what is particularly important to them about their fathers. Collections of such letters are a suitable basis for conversations about fatherhood, for instance during parent-teacher conferences or publicity work related to Father’s Day.

For a sample letter, click on the picture above.

 

Games for Fathers and their Children

All forms of play between fathers and their children are important for strengthening the father-child relationship and contribute to the development of children in meaningful ways. Some great games suited for group settings can be explored on this website.

 

Intercultural Father-Child Breakfast

Why not use Father’s Day as an opportunity for intercultural exchange among men? If the purpose of Father’s Day is to experience the sheer diversity of fatherly engagements, then we should also acknowledge the various forms of fatherly engagement practiced by fathers from immagrant communities. If we make all these different forms of fatherhood publicly visible, we can ease existing tensions and make an important contribution to intercultural exchange. Therefore, we encourage people to get in touch with organizations or meeting places serving fathers from immigrant communities, select a suitable venue, and organize a breakfast gathering for fathers and their children on Father’s Day. In the past, a game of soccer—fathers vs. children—has served as a beneficial and fun acitivity at such events.

More information at: www.vaterseininderschweiz.ch

 

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