New working fathers will now have an opportunity to spend those first few precious weeks with their newborn child without having to worry about a lack of a paternity time paycheck. That’s because expectant fathers can apply for a $5,000 paternity leave grant from Dove Men+ Care in a special initiative that is hoping to support working fathers who can’t afford to take an unpaid leave to be with their families.
Many new parents find themselves having to go back to work a few short weeks, or in some cases, a few short days after the birth of their newborn baby. With many families relying on a minimum of two incomes, it seems almost impossible for both parents to take time off, especially when very few companies offer paid maternity or paternity leaves. Luckily, Dove Men+Care is trying to change that by supporting fathers who want to spend time with their precious bundles of joy, but just can’t afford to do so.
A study conducted by the company revealed that 50 percent of new fathers would like to take time off, but can’t afford it. Another 2014 study from Boston College found that only one in five dads are offered paid paternity leaves, which allows them to stay at home and help their partner with the sleepless nights, household chores and all of the child rearing that comes with raising a family.
For the next two years, Dove Men+Care will be offering $5,000 grants to 200 fathers who don’t get more than 10 days of paid leave from their jobs. In most cases, many fathers combine their personal time off, sick days, or vacation leave for their own paternity leave packages.
The Vice President of Skin Cleansing and Baby Care for Dove’s parent company, Unilever, Nick Sukas said in a press release, "Our goal is to increase utilization rates of paidpaternity leave for those men who have access to it and encourage other companies to come together and offer men paid paternity leave so they can take the time to care for their families."
In addition, Dove Men+Care is partnering with Serena Williams’ husband and Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian to give out more than $1 million as part of its Pledge for Paternity Leave campaign. The couple have a 1-year-old child, Olympia, and Alexis says that he would like to see more fathers spend time with their children, especially during the first year of their lives.
“I saw firsthand the importance of taking paternity leave and being there for my family during a critical time in our lives," Ohanian said. "No dad should have to sacrifice taking leave, and I've been very public about taking mine in an effort to show other men that you can still be an ambitious businessperson while also taking time for your family. And it's not just fathers who reap the benefits—it's in the best interest of families, workplaces and communities to support dads in taking leave.”
To apply for the grant visit Dove Men+Care for all the details.
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