Congratulations to Roger Olley who has been awarded the MBE in the Queen's birthday honours for ‘services to families’. From 2000 until his retirement in 2010 Roger led the Father's Plus Service for Children North East.
In the 1990s we recognised that many services for 'families' actually only engage with mothers yet research shows children do best when both parents are actively involved in looking after their children and their education. So we set up the Father's Plus Service to prepare men for fatherhood and ensure that fathers are included as equal and valued parents in services such as childbirth and maternity, early years and primary schools.
Under Roger’s leadership the Fathers Plus service has become the leading UK experts on how to involve fathers and male carers in ‘family’ services. Roger managed a team of Fathers Workers who built up expertise in involving Dads then spread this knowledge to Sure Start Children's Centres, Primary Schools and Community Health Services all over the UK.
Roger contributed significantly to the development of national policies and strategies about including fathers, he co-authored the ‘Developing Men Friendly Organisations’ accredited training course which has been taken up by managers, policy makers and practitioners in organisations all over the UK. Since his 'retirement' he is still in great demand to advise public sector organisations and speak at conferences. He also continues to write about fatherhood.