HOW WE IMPACT

Real Dads Read encourages fathers to engage children’s early language and reading skills by increasing father involvement in shared reading practices.

Program Examination
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Fathers Facing Barriers


Fathers play an important role in their child’s development, with research suggesting that fathering contributes uniquely to children’s language and literacy development. Low-income noncustodial fathers tend to face multiple employment barriers that affect their ability to pay child support.

  • fathers having full-time year-round work10%
  • fathers reported jobless for a year or more40%
  • lack a high school diploma or GED40%
  • received job specific training for education6%

Our Mission


Supporting fathers in their role as a parent, particularly by encouraging them to engage in home literacy practices, such as shared book reading, likely has a direct impact on children’s language and literacy development.

Real Dads Read provides books to fathers in local barbershops in an attempt to meet fathers in naturalistic contexts and capitalize on the rich oral tradition of African American families. Real Dads Read encourages fathers to engage children’s early language and reading skills by increasing father involvement in shared reading practices.

While RDR is designed to encourage all fathers to read to their children, there is a focus on Black and Latino fathers, particularly in low-income communities.

Our Projects



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Barbershops RDR

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Daddy Book Series

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Million Fathers March

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RDR Book Club

More than one-quarter of all children in the United States live apart from one of their parents and nearly 30 percent of these children are poor.

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