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Painting memories with my father

A bridge surrounded by water and two fishing rods, a colourful carousel, a field of flowers or a summer day near a lake, and a lot of memories with the father. Ten fathers, members of the Fathers Clubs from Straseni and Falesti,  described their fatherhood on a piece of paper and filled it with colour during a painting workshop organised by #UNFPA under the Regional Program ‘Together Against Gender Stereotypes and Gender-Based Violence’, funded by the European Union and implemented by UN Women and UNFPA.

This event aimed at offering to fathers and children a place where they can interact with each other by playing, thus underlining the importance of engaging men in child upbringing and gender equality promotion.

 

 

 

 

‘It is a pleasure to be the father of my children’

Altair Apostol attended the workshop together with Alexandra, his 3-year-old daughter. They painted together a bright day of their family: mother, father, Alexandra and her baby brother. The little girl drew the sun as big as her entire family, it means the harmony is in the right place, in the Apostol family.

‘I try to enjoy the fatherhood together with Alexandra. She will grow up, but our memories will last. The way lasted my memories about moments spent with my father. It is a pleasure for me to be the father of my children’ says Altair.

 

 

Valeriu Gligor and his two sons painted a family dinner. They wanted to show how united their family is, where both the mother and the father are involved in children’s upbringing, and household duties are shared equally.

‘There aren’t any stereotypes in our family. There are no female or male duties. We both get involved, so our children learn from it’ said Valeriu.

 

 

Fathers help children become assertive

The art work was accompanied by thematic discussions with professionals, where fathers learned practical details about positive parenting methods.

‘The discussions about responsible fatherhood made me rethink the way I bring up my children. If until recently I used to be severe, now I have changed my behaviour. My attitude towards them is kinder’ said Valeriu Gligor after the discussion with fathers.

 

 

 Generations and Gender Survey, conducted by UNFPA Moldova in 2020, shows that only two of 100 fathers in the Republic of Moldova put their children to bed at night, other 3% of Moldovan fathers play with their children when at home, and only four of 100 fathers help children with their homework.

On the other hand, the studies on paternity and the father’s role for child development show that children who have a father who is engaged in their upbringing have a 40% lower risk to develop negative behaviours, such as alcohol consumption, drug addition, delinquent behaviour. Most of the children with engaged fathers have higher academic performances and are more assertive.

Based on these data, UNFPA Moldova and the European Union, with the support of the Center for Information and Documentation on the Rights of the Child, established nine clubs in Straseni and Falesti to support men in sharing household and family responsibilities.

As a result, since November 2020, more than 150 fathers and fathers-to-be have received support and resources enabling them to participate actively in child-rearing and activities traditionally regarded as female-dominated.

 

 

This article was produced as part of ‘Together Against Gender Stereotypes and Gender-Based Violence’ Program, funded by the European Union and implemented by UN Women and UNFPA Moldova. This Program supports gender equality, addresses perceptions about the roles of men and women in the family and in the society, and is meant to contribute to eliminating gender-based violence.

Contact data for the media:

Ludmila Bogheanu, Communication Officer, ‘Together Against Gender Stereotypes and Gender-Based Violence’ Regional Program, tel. +37369403016, email: bogheanu@unfpa.org

Photo: @UNFPA Moldova/ Ion Buga/ 2021