A present and active father is a gift that more than 50% of South African children do not get to enjoy.
The number of children growing up without fathers in South Africa is not definitively known, but we all agree it is too high. Many people have gone so far as saying absent black fathers are a pandemic in this country. The subject of deadbeats has been a trending topic on Twitter streets.
Deadbeating should become an administrative nightmare for men. It should come up when you renew your license, when you pay your taxes, when you renew your asylum/residency, when you apply for a job, when you apply for loans and funding. It should haunt you until you do something.
— Lebogang Mashile (@lebomashile) November 30, 2020
SA has a movement of authors who are writing on the subject of fatherhood, identifying and offering solutions to fatherlessness. Below is a list of some locally authored books on this important topic.
Growing up without a father, Dr Charley Pietersen
Humanitarian hero Dr Charley Pietersen has dedicated his life to the subject of fatherlessness. He is the author of Growing Up Without a Father. In this book, Pietersen uses his personal life experiences to inspire, empower and equip readers how to tackle issues of fatherlessness.
To order the book you can contact Dr Pietersen on 083 388 7977.
Chronicles of a Fatherless Husband/Son, Patrick Neo Mabiletsa
Based on his personal experience of fatherlessness, Patrick Mabiletsa has authored two books that explore the outcomes of yearning for a father’s love. The book encourages fathers and fathers-to-be to stay in the lives of their children despite the challenges. He argues that fathers are equally as important as mothers in the life of a child.
To order the book you can contact Mabiletsa on 071 957 4623.
Absence of the Father, Nke Serobe
Author Nke Serobe realised her fatherhood lack at the latter age of her life. This realisation led her down the path of retelling the story through her book. The book identifies what some of these gaps are that fathers leave and how families can rebuild and reconcile broken relationships between children and their fathers.
To order the book you can contact Serobe on 071 957 4623.
Boy Child You Matter, Dr Charley Pietersen
“From a young age, boys are taught that they have to be strong, brave and not show their emotions.” The book tackles some of the traits that lead to toxic masculinity and gives young boys the tools to navigate emotional turmoil. Pietersen recommends the book for every boy child and single mother who wants to understand a boy child better in the absence of his father. On 3 April 2021, Pietersen is hosting the Boy Child You Matter Empowerment Day at the Freedom Park Heritage Site in Pretoria. He will be hosting 25 fatherless boys and “stand-in” dads.
Baba: Men and Fatherhood in South Africa, Linda Richter & Robert Morrell
The very definition of fatherhood is the biggest contributing factor to the state of fatherhood in South Africa and the world. “Financial provider” is how men and women view fatherhood, according to research conducted by Heartlines. In Baba, authors Linda Richter and Robert Morrell define the term fatherhood, who is a father and what is their parenting role.
You can order the book here.