As we reflect on the role of fathers, it is important that being a father figure is not just in the household. There are many spaces for influencing the young generation. Mentorship is another area. Many adults come into contact with children and the youth.
However, as opposed to mentoring them, we are quick to judge and ostracism them. We fail to realize that children require help in growing up. They need to be taught how to be good citizens.
Mentorship is taxing and painstaking. It requires a deliberative and patient disposition. Many older people are not good at mentoring.
For society to deal with the many challenges facing it, for us to raise the next generation of citizens we have to invest in mentorship programmes. These should be at homes, in religious institutions, and in educational spaces.
In the traditional societies, apprenticeship and mentorship was part and parcel of the society. However, today’s rat race society has replaced quality time with trying to make ends meet. This approach has to be reversed if we are to build a strong foundation for a sustainable society.
It does not pay to meet the financial needs of your children and have enough for their future, if that future is a hopeless future. Hope is not bought in a shop. It is nurtured through speech, through inspiration and through character building. To do so requires daily investment.
Fathers and mothers play complementary roles in upbringing of their children. When one fails to undertake their tasks, there is a gap in the growth of the child.
It does not pay to argue whether mothers are less or more responsible than fathers. It is more important to seek synergies.
The challenges of modern parenting are such that unless both mothers and fathers adapt to modern challenges and collaborate in resolving them, we will continue wondering what happened to the modern child without realising that it is parents who are unable to cope.