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Entries in tv (3)


Kids Without Dads programme

ITV's Tonight programme on Thursday 28th August looked at fatherlessness, following the recent Centre for Social Justice report on fractured families.

Recent research has shown that the number of lone parent families is on the rise in UK with over 1 million children living without any formal contact with their father. In certain areas of the country, young people are more likely to have a mobile phone in their pocket than a dad.

Fiona Foster travels up and down the country to find out about the impact of family breakdown and father absence. The UK rates as one of the top three countries in Europe with the highest number of single mums. Figures show that 2.8 million children live with their mother as the sole parent.

The programme explores the issues and prejudices li both mothers and fathers, highlighting the problems that are caused by the lack of male involvement in many children's lives. 

Maybe no surprises in this programme, but it did manage to convey some strong messages about the importance of fathers and the barriers that many face to stay involved.


Channel 4 Dispatches programme on shared parenting

Broadcast on Monday 14th January on Channel 4, a Dispatches programme  "Sharing Mum and Dad" follows presenter Tim Lovejoy, a divorced father of two, as he investigates the current situation surrounding shared parenting following divorce or separation.

Tim hears a wide range of voices and explores the psychological effects of parental separation on children, talking to teenagers about their personal experiences.

The programme investigates the roles of mums and dads in 2013, asking whether current legislation in this area is up-to-date with the way in which modern families operate, and exploring different ways of sharing parenting post-separation.

Tim uses social media to generate debate, much of it incorporated into the film. And, in a first for Dispatches, Channel 4 is showing behind-the-scenes clips of the production process online, to help inform the debate.

There is also an online survey connected to the programme.

The Call Kaye programme on BBC Scotland picked up on the topic the following morning (interview with Tim from 15:30). 

Scottish family lawyer John Fotheringham contributed his four Shared Parenting maxims to the phone-in:

- don't argue in front of the children

- don't criticise the other parent in front of the children

- take a long view, one day you will be shared grandparenting

- act parentally in the interests of the children and don't score points off your ex-partner.


Dispatches covers shared parenting

In January 2013 Dispatches will be airing a documentary about shared parenting on Channel 4, presented by Tim Lovejoy.

Ahead of this, they have launched a survey to canvass the opinions of parents and children who have experienced separation on the topic.

The survey can be accessed here. It only takes a minute to complete, so please fill it out if you get a chance, and share it with your friends!