Workshops are an important part of sharing information and networking about the topics that matter to you.  There are three sets of workshops throughout the conference.  

You will be able to choose one (1) from each series during your registration.  Please look over the workshops carefully and choose the one most relevant to you in each set.

Workshops Series A

Feb 28 - 11:00 am - 12:30 pm

A-1: Innovative Strategies to Promote the Mental Health of Fathers

Dr. Deborah Da Costa, PhD

This workshop will summarize recent findings related to the prevalence and determinants of common psychological difficulties experienced by men during the transition to fatherhood. The use of e-health technology to promote the mental health of fathers will be discussed by illustrating a prototype program recently piloted in three Canadian cities.


A-2: Traditional Parenting from a First Nation Fathers' Perspective

Dr. Kevin wâsakâyâsiw Lewis

This session will cover fatherhood from a First Nations perspective and the importance of our roles as fathers in the home fire, incorporating language, land based teachings in today’s context. We will share song, dance and games that can be used in the home. The session will cover some of the activities from kâniyâsihk Culture Camps.


A-3: L’histoire inspirante du RVP

Raymond Villeneuve

Le RVP est un organisme québécois qui regroupe 250 organismes et individus de partout à travers la province. Son action et celles de ses partenaires a fait en sorte que le Québec dispose maintenant de plusieurs politiques publiques qui intègrent les réalités paternelles et des ressources de soutien aux pères en difficulté et à leurs enfants les plus nombreuses au Canada. À travers la petite histoire du RVP, la présentation mettra en lumière les stratégies utilisées par cette organisation pour atteindre ces résultats et présentera quelques programmes de soutien aux pères, novateurs et performants.


A-4: This (Almost) Changes Everything

Brian Russell

When a man becomes a dad, many things happen.  Managing the transition is an important part of bonding with his newborn.  This workshop discusses the things that men face with the arrival of their baby: how it changes them, their relationship, and their life.  We will also share some best practices for supporting men at this time.


A-5: Dad HERO Project

Louise Leonardi

Canada houses about 23,000 men federally each year and many of them are dads who continually ask CFCN for help in strengthening their relationships with their families and children. Come and hear about the partnership we have built with Dad Central Ontario and the Movember Foundation to deliver a Canada-wide project called DadHERO for incarcerated dads to help them understand their value as a father, to improve their social connectedness, and to be an asset to their children.

A-6:  Young Dads Issues (presentations and panel discussion)

Michael Bautista/Lisa Barton and Holly Charles

Families Matter will explore and share with participants how the components of their Successful Young Parents Program has fostered the learning and development of fathers. Further discussion will highlight how father focused programming has influenced the well-being of their children and partners. (Michael and Lisa) 

Catholic Family Service of Calgary piloted a child abuse and intimate partner violence prevention program aimed at increasing young fathers’ economic self-sufficiency, emotional and physical well-being, involvement with their infants, parenting skills, and ability to co-parent and get along with the mother.  Research results from the three year study will be shared.  (Holly)

Workshops Series B

Feb 28 - 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm

B-1: La sexualité des hommes lors de la transition à la parentalité

Viola Polomeno

Cet atelier de 90 minutes portera sur une dimension de la sexopérinatalité, celle de la sexualité des hommes lors de la transition à la parentalité. Leur sexualité sera expliquée en fonction de chacune des étapes de cette transition : préconception, grossesse, accouchement, parentalité et allaitement.


B-2: Helping Fathers in Distress

Francine de Montigny and Annie Devault

This workshop will aim to: 1) inform practitioners who come into contact with men/fathers in crisis (e.g. bereavement, depression) regarding nuances to consider in working with them; 2) stimulate reflection with regards to intervention with men in crisis; 3) equip practitioners to develop successful practices for working with men.


B-3: Five Things We Can Do To Improve Father Involvement

Brian Russell

Approximately 85% of our youth and young adults who struggle with addiction, early childhood pregnancy and diversified behaviour issues, including incarceration, experience a lack of Father Involvement. Recognizing the impact of the father in all these areas and more, this workshop will discuss a 5-point action plan generating solutions for workers, clinicians, practitioners, managers, and researchers to support the role of fathers in their children’s lives.


B-4: Engaged Fatherhood-Gender Equality: Here, there & everywhere

Ian DeGeer & Kate Bojin

This workshop will explore the landscape of engaged fatherhood from two perspectives. The first is a provincial study of engaged fatherhood that explored how fathers are creating gender equity in their families and how communities can engage fathers on the issue of gender-based violence.  The second is an international experience that explored the benefits of early fatherhood and the importance of infant-parent attachment for both parent and child.


B-5: How to serve those who serve

Layal Dleikan

Males in our society are taught to “toughen up” and “get over it”. However, particularly in certain male dominated professions, there is very little openness and support for sharing the everyday struggles of balancing being a dad and all the difficult things they are experiencing through their jobs. This workshop will:

  • increase understanding of “dad life” in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) and other serving jobs (RCMP, city police, etc).

  • provide information on how to connect dads and their families in these serving careers.

  • highlight strategies for supporting these dads.


B-6: Nobody's Perfect: Dads Engaging Dads Community Projects

Carmen Paterson-Payne, Tanis Shanks, Cathy Ryan, Connie Herman

This will discuss two provincial (Manitoba and Saskatchewan) community-based Dads Engaging Dads pilot projects. Each project utilized peer fathers to recruit and help facilitate Nobody’s Perfect Dads groups and are now creating a collaborative network to promote knowledge sharing among program facilitators and their agencies.  They will also facilitate an interactive session full of concrete ideas and activities to use within Nobody’s Perfect parenting groups. Through the power of play and innovative practices of group facilitation, workshop participants will become familiar with the revised Nobody’s Perfect materials and leave revitalized with practical activities and adaptation tools that they can use in their communities.  Participants will discover that when fathers are involved and supported by one another, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated to learn.

Workshops Series C

Mar 1 - 10:45 am - 12:15 pm


C-1: Immigrant Fathers Build Creativity and Confidence in the Early Years

Rashid Bismullah

This presentation will show how the Saskatoon Open Door Society has been supporting immigrant and refugee parents. It will highlight the challenges new immigrants and refugees face as parents coming to Canada and share best practices and models applied to engage immigrant and refugee parents to participate in new parenting roles, including how parenting in Canada can be different from other countries.


C-2: Stratégies pratiques pour aider les pères à offrir un support efficace à leur conjointe souffrant d’un trouble de l’humeur et/ou de l’anxiété du post-partum

Geneviève Desrochers

Cet atelier souligne l’importance d’informer les futurs pères au sujet des troubles de l’humeur et de l’anxiété du post-partum et fournit des stratégies pratiques pour les aider à offrir un support efficace à leur conjointe si elle traverse une telle épreuve. À travers des témoignages authentiques, les émotions et les besoins des pères dans cette situation sont aussi abordés.

C-3: Innovative Approaches to Engaging Men

Owen Brigstock-Barron

The Movember Foundation will facilitate a panel discussion featuring global experts in men’s health who are developing innovative approaches to engage men in their role as fathers.


C-4: Men’s Sexuality during the Transition to Parenthood (English)

Viola Polomeno

This 90-minute workshop will focus on one dimension of perinatal sexuality, that of men’s sexuality during the transition to parenthood. Their sexuality in relation to each phase of this transition will be presented: preconception, pregnancy, birth, parenting and breastfeeding.


C-5: Engaging Dads with Parenting Workshops

Davidson Elder

This workshop will feature successful methods that have been used to develop, promote and facilitate parenting workshops for dads and men who care for children.  Practical father-engagement strategies and lessons learned over a decade of facilitating parenting workshops for dads will be shared. The importance of community collaboration and ways to coordinate community efforts to engage and support dads will be discussed. A short Q&A session will conclude this workshop.

C-6: Challenges, Resources, and Supports for Indigenous Fathers

Randy Budd

The workshop will share information on the Circles of Fatherhood program in Toronto, as well as discuss the development of the Zhishay program that supports Indigenous fathers in an urban environment.