Ask a child to draw a picture of the perfect family and you will probably be given a drawing of the little one holding hands with their mom and dad. Maybe they will include their little brother or sister, even if it is an image of them in a rocket ship being sent to the moon. But today 24 million children face a very different reality – because dad simply isn’t in the picture. Whether it is tossing a football, helping with homework, or reading a bed time story, the everyday interactions a Father has with their sons and daughters play a critical role in their children’s development and journey towards adulthood. Fathers who are active and engaged in their children’s lives help them build a strong foundation for a bright future. This Father’s Day, and throughout the month of June, the Department of Children and Families (DCF) would like to join Governor Walker in honoring the responsible, committed dads, whether biological, step, foster or adopted, whose constant presence and support has a positive impact on their children today and throughout their lives. In recognition of the importance of fathers, the Department has been actively working to re-focus structured public assistance programs to address the needs of the entire family, including the needs of fathers. By focusing on fathers, both custodial and non-custodial, DCF is striving to ensure that all dads have an opportunity to gain the skills and work experience needed to sustain employment, re-engage with their children and serve as positive role-models. As we honor fathers on their special day in June ― as well as throughout the entire year ― let’s remember the importance of children having their father in their lives and continue to find additional ways to empower dads to help their children thrive.