October 13, 2017

Anonymous gift enhances South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families Men's Health Initiative

A generous $10,000 donation to the South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families earlier this year 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 the gift.

These much-needed services for fathers are delivered through Access to Men’s Healthcare, a comprehensive healthcare initiative of the South Carolina 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.”

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 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.

The South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families is a ministry of the Sisters of Charity Health System.

Pictured: A program participant at Upstate Fatherhood Coalition gets a blood pressure check, part of the health screenings and other services provided through the South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families Access to Men’s Health initiative.

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