All Pro Dad breakfast at #43 school

Fatherhood engagement has a significant influence on children. More engaged fathers can positively affect a child’s healthy physical, emotional and social development. Research shows that father involvement impacts their children’s mental development, changing their behavior, inspiring them to play and developing their social skills. Studies also show that children with active fathers are more likely to get good grades in school, participate in extracurricular activities and have less discipline problems.

Healthi Kids supports the All Pro Dad fatherhood program in three schools in the Rochester City School District: #3, #43 and #57. All Pro Dad is a national program that is designed to promote the active involvement of fathers in the lives of their young children. The program features a school gathering once a month where dads enjoy breakfast with their kids and have meaningful conversations. Dads kick off the breakfast by sharing reasons why they are proud of their children. Evidence shows that by helping kids to understand how much they are valued and loved, they are generally happier and more confident.

The Rochester City School District’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative recently partnered with Healthi Kids, Healthy Baby Network, North Star Rights of Passage and RocCity48 to host the “Fatherhood Engagement: NFL Pro Bowl Summit”. The event was held on Sunday, January 26, 2020 at Wilson Foundation Academy. The event’s target audience was fathers and male caregivers of boys and young men of color. Attendees had the opportunity to watch the NFL Pro Bowl, and connect with other dads.

                        Fatherhood Engagement NFL Pro Bowl Summit at Wilson Foundation Academy

Keynote speaker, Simeon Banister, VP of Community Programs at the Rochester Area Community Foundation, challenged the men to be leaders and to be role models for their children in spite of the obstacles that make it tough for fathers today. Banister also encouraged fathers to come together and make children the community’s top priority.

City of Rochester Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Recreation and Youth Services, Eric Rose, Matt Jones and Rick Gause, the father of former NFL player Quentin Gause, sat on the panel and shared their stories of raising their sons and how they helped them achieve their goals to become NCAA Division I athletes. Fathers and children asked questions hoping to better understand how to balance sports, school and family. The event was well attended – with nearly 100 people were there. Check out news coverage about the event here.

For more information on father engagement or to start a chapter of All Pro Dad at your school, contact Erick Stephens, Parent Engagement Specialist at or (585) 224-3112.