Encompass strives to focus its programming on prevention services that will start our youth down a positive path so they never experience poverty, neglect, or trauma. Setting our young ones up for success is the most effective way to strengthen our community, but our children need the support at home, from both mom and dad. Our Papás program promotes father involvement as part of Encompass’s ongoing efforts to reduce the number of people in our community that struggle with homelessness, addiction, and unemployment.
To continue this work, Encompass was awarded the New Pathways for Fathers and Children grant by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Children and Families. This grant provides $1 million per year for 5 years, allowing Papás to serve 250 additional families between Santa Cruz and Monterey County.
Services focus on five relationships: relationship to self, relationship to child, relationship to family of origin, relationship to co-parent, and relationship to community. “This grant provides a rich opportunity to support fathers and father figures in a compassionate and effective fashion,” says Jeffrey Lehner, new Program Manager of Papás.
“Economic stability is key to successful parenting,” says Lehner. "Our new evidence-based job readiness curriculum allows us to support dads by increasing self-esteem and emphasizing personal values.”
This cross-county effort will provide improved and expanded services to more low-income fathers and their families from Santa Cruz to Salinas, improving lives and communities into the future.