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October 13, 2017

Gift from The Cheerful Giver Enhances Men's Health Initiative

Being a nurturing, supportive father requires a man to take on many responsibilities to provide the financial and emotional support a child needs. Securing employment, providing food, shelter and clothing usually outrank a man’s personal health needs on any checklist of fatherhood priorities.

This is evidenced by a high rate of unaddressed healthcare needs of most men entering our fatherhood programs. For low-income dads, poor attention to personal health is usually tied to lack of healthcare coverage due to unemployment or low-wage jobs providing no benefits.

A generous $10,000 donation in May 2017 from The Cheerful Giver, an anonymous donor through the Central Carolina Community Foundation, has enhanced access to men’s health services for fatherhood program participants. Funds target support for men’s health services in Richland, Lexington, Marlboro, Lancaster and Spartanburg counties. This is the second year the Center has received this gift.

These much-needed services for fathers are delivered through Access to Men’s Healthcare, a comprehensive healthcare initiative of the SC Center for Fathers and Families providing health care and health education to low-income, non-custodial fathers.

At program offices, a Nurse Practitioner provides on-site services with consultations, screenings, and health education. More comprehensive health services, including surgical procedures and mental health services, are delivered through referrals to community healthcare partners supporting this initiative.

“Addressing health within the context of fatherhood helps our dads understand why taking care of themselves is vital to being good provider for their children,” said Pat Littlejohn, executive director, SC Center for Fathers and Families. “We are grateful to The Cheerful Giver for continued support of our efforts to improve the health of fathers in South Carolina.”

A program participant at Upstate Fatherhood Coalition gets a blood pressure check, part of the health screenings and other services provided through the SCCFF Access to Men’s Health initiative.