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Columbia group offers support, camaraderie to fathers

Zane Bright holds his 2-year-old daughter, Eleanor Bright at Lend & Learn where the Dads group meets each month.
Charity Quinn
First Chance for Children
Zane Bright and Eleanor Bright at Lend & Learn where the Dads group meets each month. Photo taken by Charity Quinn.

CoMo Dads is a free monthly group for fathers where they learn from one another while their kids play. The group exists in partnership with Parents as Teachers, a national group, and is sponsored by First Chance for Children in Columbia.

Zane Bright is one of the group’s organizers and a stay-at-home dad to Eleanor, his 2-year-old daughter. He said meetings are a chance for parents to share challenges they’re facing, have book discussions on how to talk so little kids will listen and explore the portrayal of fathers in media.

“One of the reasons I love getting out with my daughter is it gives her social interaction,” Bright said. “It's one thing for her to play with me at home, but it's another to see her interact with other people and see how she kind of forms attachments.”

Bright said CoMo Dads is a relatively new program that formed "organically" last May. Now, eight to 10 members regularly attend meetings.

First Chance for Children

“It's a pretty diverse group,” Bright said. “There are stay at home dads. There are people working white collar jobs and like construction. There are people who work night shift who come in after their shift with their kiddo. There are some people … with, like, advanced degrees working in really specialized jobs.”

Bright said he would love for the group to continue to grow, and he hopes members will begin having additional get-togethers to take advantage of warm spring and summer weather.

“Going to the CoMo Dads group and being with the other dads has made me a better dad and made me more appreciative of the time I get to spend with [my daughter],” Bright said.

CoMo Dads’ February meeting is Monday from 9:00 -11:00 a.m. For more information, visit CoMo Dads on Facebook.

Bailey Stover is a multimedia journalist who graduated in May 2024. She is the creator and voice of "Alphabet Soup," which runs weekly on KBIA.
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