Behind every young child who believes himself is a parent who believed first- Matthew Jacobson
Last Sunday, people from all around the world celebrated Fathers day. This is fast becoming a popular holiday. A day set aside to honour and recognize men who are playing a leading role in nurturing and raising children.
Fathering is a role most men ignore, for many their duty stops at being a sperm donor. The role of parenting is left squarely with the mother. This trend has caused a severe breakdown in family life, most men grow up with little or no male influences and they move on to creating the same pattern in adulthood. We believe that in sharing stories about men who are trying hard at becoming parents, we would be helping to change the narrative.
Our first stop is with Mr. Nfa Kargbo, a father who aspires to be a better person always. He grew up with 6 siblings and is now married with two kids. He works as a development expert with a business & finance background . He is multilingual.
What do you enjoy about being a Father?
I enjoy the fact that I am responsible for the security and happiness of my children. The decision taken to bring them to this world is always followed by the obligation to ensure their safety, happiness, health, education etc.
What are some of the favourite things that you like doing with your children?
I love being around them or them being around me. It provides an opportunity for them to see and learn from me and me to understand their personalities better. Children learn faster from what they see in their environs. Once we do it right when they’re younger, it shouldn’t be much of a hassle when they grow and essentially know how to behave when you’re not around. Children see from their parents what not to be nor do.
They say being a Father is tough- do you agree? What do you think makes a good father?
I do agree, especially if you’re aware you’re a father and know what it means to be one. It’s difficult to pin down what constitutes a good father (men are all not the same) but I must say you must be responsible and show character when it matters. The wellbeing of a child as much as it is a shared responsibility I believe fathers should constantly show character for the child to be inspired to better, stay motivated when its challenging, determined to succeed and have something to look up to in the future.
Share an ugly experience revolving around caring for and raising your child (ren), what would you have done better?
I would say I haven’t really had an ugly experience in caring or raising them. I’ve had challenges but with those, as a parent, we face them every day and what matters to me is how prepared I am to deal with them as they come. I am still in the learning process.
In Africa and many other places, the Father’s role stops at being a provider. How do you think communities can support Men who want to take it further?
First of all it shouldn’t stop at being the provider. Family for me is like a tightly knit team set-up, with different roles for people with different characters. Sometimes you negotiate, other times you show you can put up a fight, other times you mediate other times you encourage etc. In all of it we should win, lose and grow together as one unit.
Do you have any male role models that you look up to? If yes, tell us their names and why?
First of all, my father is a key role model based on some special interests and aspirations. We share a lot of commonalities (don’t remind my mother) in thought processing, behavior to others and education in particular. He provides useful insights into keeping a family intact based on what he learnt himself as a divorcee. Generally, I essentially learn from others as well.