"Tragedy Strikes, Local Father Accused"

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 15, 2013

Media Contact:
Carrie Hoeppner
DCF Central Region Communications Director
407-264-1379

"Tragedy Strikes, Local Father Accused"
Healthy Start's Boot Camp for New Dads and DCF Prepare for Friday's Panel Discussion Focusing on Fathers, Launch Social Media Campaign for Dads and Male Caregivers

Orlando, Fl. - The Florida Department of Children and Families' new social media campaign, launched in partnership with Healthy Start Coalition of Orange County, comes amidst the news that a Central Florida father has been charged in connection with the death of his child. Central Florida's Department of Children and Families teamed up with Healthy Start and their Boot Camp for New Dads program in an effort to "Focus on the Fathers" originally after the arrest of a local man in connection with the death of his Osceola County baby this past winter. While many prenatal and parenting programs understandably focus on expecting and new moms, the agencies have teamed up to let the expecting or new fathers, as well as step dads out there know that there is a great deal of support for them as well. Statistics reflect that in the event of tragedy, the male caregiver figure is more prone to demonstrate violence towards a child in response to stress or feelings of being overwhelmed.

The month long social media campaign, found on the Florida Department of Children and Families Facebook page, blog site and twitter feeds features information throughout April aimed to make new fathers or those men in a caregiver role feel the support of each other, as well as their community.

The month-long campaign will conclude with a 10:00 am press conference, followed by panel discussion this Friday at Orlando's City Hall. The event aims to recruit organizations within the corrections, classrooms, and congregation communities -those interested in incorporating programs geared for young men and fathers in their community efforts. "In my role as a Regional Director, at times I may hold various titles, but honestly my favorite will always remain my role as a dad; I know so many fathers out there share that same sentiment." says Bill D'Aiuto, DCF's Central Region Director, who is also a father of four. The panel discussion will begin with a press conference, and segue into a panel discussion of local experts on the subject of fathers, male figures and children. Feedback from the panel and audience will then be collected and presented to the Orange County Children's Alliance as well as Children's Cabinet in the interest of further exploring opportunities to strengthen young men caring for children.

Like and share with us through Facebook at Florida Department of Children and Families or twitter @MyFLFamilies where Florida father's are invited to contribute their funny or compelling stories by messaging or posting through DCF's Facebook. We invite fathers throughout the state to share with each other!

"Boot Camp for New Dads, Orlando" and Healthy Start of Orange County can also be found on Facebook!

###