This past June, families from all over Buffalo came together for a unique and inspiring event: Dads Do Hair Too. Designed to bring dads and their daughters closer together, the event was a collaboration between three incredible community organizations: Buffalo Prenatal Perinatal Network (BPPN), Melinated Moms WNY, and The Hair Hive.
A long-standing community advocate in Western New York, BPPN’s mission is to empower women, fathers, and families to take charge of their family’s health and well-being by connecting them to resources and providing support, advocacy, and family services. One such service is BPPN’s Fatherhood Initiative. It aims to meet fathers and male caregivers where they are by providing them with the information they need to actively engage with their families in the most meaningful ways. With support from Rich’s, which provided a grant to BPPN to host the event (and another grant to Melinated Moms after the event) Dads Do Hair Too was a perfect example of this.
“It was an honor to help dads create moments with their daughters. The father-daughter relationship is so unique and significant.”
– Antoine Johnson, Fatherhood Program Manager, Buffalo Prenatal Perinatal Network
This focus on family advocacy is something BPPN shares with its fellow collaborator, Melinated Moms. The social enterprise is dedicated to supporting women and mothers of all ages through advocacy, education, and entrepreneurship, and understands the important role fathers play in their daughters’ lives and the family unit.
“The primary focus of Melinated Moms is the empowerment of mothers and women while encouraging fathers to maintain their importance. The Black family is integral in our community, and it is crucial that we spotlight positive images of men and fathers—helping fully support the roles that they have in their families, villages, and beyond.”
– Alexcia Harrod, VP and Co-Founder, Melinated Moms WNY
Along with general support and resources, the fathers in attendance received specific instruction about managing their daughters’ hair, enabling them to play an active role in helping their daughters feel confident moving forward. Bringing her skills and expertise to assist them was Lauren Frazier, the CEO of Building Beauty, an organization that specializes in teaching hair braiding.
“This event was to make an effort to support the fathers in our community. We taught a skill that will not only help in their everyday lives but will also enhance the bond between them and their children.”
— Lauren Frazier, The Hair Hive
By working together, these three organizations were able to help dads connect with their daughters in new ways and show them that “doing your daughter’s hair shouldn’t be scary.” Judging by all the smiles, they were right.