In our ministry, we are frequently highlighting the important work we do daily with mothers. We come alongside them in the midst of overwhelming fears, insecurities, and questions like, Can I do this? Should I keep the child? How will I support it? What will my family think? Is it really a life?
It’s tempting to think of these as women’s questions.
In our culture, we have tended to think of men as isolated from the decision-making process; someone who is less than a true parent.
The language of our culture actively excludes men from the conversation entirely. The debate is about what a woman can or cannot do with her body. Men are told to “support whatever decision the woman wants to make.”
And yet, the majority of the women who have sought services through our PRCs say that the father of the child is the most influential in the decision-making process.
Admittedly, we can say that men bear responsibility for the isolation. Our centers see women daily who are left to carry, birth, and raise a child all on their own. At the first sign of pregnancy, many men leave, coerce toward abortion, or act in some other way as though they are a passive bystander and not 50% of the chromosomes.
We recognize these things. We see that many men shirk their responsibility. We also see that there are many men who do want to take an active role as a parent and do better. Like a lot of the mothers we see, they are awakened by the reality of a new life that they have created and now bear responsibility for. They want to respond to that God-given call but don’t feel equipped enough to do so.
Well, this Father’s day, we have an important announcement that will have lasting implications for the ministry of First Image.
We are launching what we’re calling “The Fatherhood Initiative.”
We want to bring the same prayerful, thoughtful intentionality that we bring to walking with the women we serve to the men that often walk into one of our centers with them. We want to empower, exhort, encourage, and instill value in them, all while giving them the same sense of hope that women walk out of our centers with.
In order to do this, we are going to need help.
We are looking for compassionate men who are willing and able to walk with fathers facing unplanned pregnancy in a judgement-free environment. They would need to go through a 3-day training and give their time regularly to mentoring men facing unplanned pregnancy.
If you think you are one of those men, please send an email to [email protected] or call 503-777-7097. We are extremely excited for this new chapter at First Image and are already envisioning the potential positive impact that implementing this new program could have on our ministry as a whole.