Changing Milwaukee infant mortality rates through father education

Infant mortality is a major public health issue in the Unites States disproportionally affecting African Americans.

Wisconsin and Milwaukee are identified as a high risk state and city where Black infant mortality is three times the rate of white infant mortality.

To combat this the Planning Council for Health and Human Services, Inc. has received a grant for “Engaging African-American Fathers to Reduce Infant Mortality by Improving their Health Literacy.”

Funding for this project was provided by the Wisconsin Partnership Program at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health.

This project targets African American fathers living in the Milwaukee ZIP codes identified as being most at risk for infant mortality (53205, 53206, 53210, 53216 and 53218).

Men from the community will be engaged in developing culturally appropriate health literacy materials and approaches to guide new fathers in the first nine months of fatherhood.

This project will work with Milwaukee LIHF Community Action Plan to strengthen fathers’ involvement with their family. As well as the Milwaukee Fatherhood Initiative, My Father’s House and Silver Spring Neighborhood Center working (with the Pathways to Responsible Fatherhood Project at Next Door Foundation).

The academic partners include Dr. David Pate, Associate Professor, UW Milwaukee School of Social Welfare and nationally recognized researcher on African American fathers who will serve as academic partner along with Dr. Kris Barnekow, Associate Professor in the College of Health Sciences at UW Milwaukee whose research focuses on health literacy and training in maternal and child health.