Brian Anderson, a passionate father of two, saw a gap in support for fathers. Here’s how the Facebook Community Accelerator program helped him create and grow the community he was searching for.
Making space for dads
When Brian became a father for the first time, he was awestruck. Holding his daughter, he felt the wonder and responsibility of fatherhood. He also felt the need for support from other fathers to create a world where his daughters could live and thrive.
He needed a community that could understand him. But as he searched for a father-led group that emphasized equity, support, and accountability, he couldn’t find it. So Brian and fellow father Christopher Lewis set out to create one. In 2018, that goal became the “Dads With Daughters” Facebook group.
Turns out, Brian and Christopher weren’t alone. Their Facebook community, fueled by connection, grew from 50 to 127,000 members. That inspired Brian and Christopher to take their group a step further and start a nonprofit, Fathering Together.
“We were at a point with our growth that we needed outside help,” Brian explained.
The need for outside help brought Brian and Christopher to the Facebook Community Accelerator. The program offers community leaders tailored training, new products to engage their members, and access to funds to support their next phase of development and impact.
The Facebook Community Accelerator helped the Fathering Together team expand its reach while sticking to its roots.
“Facebook had been so good to us on so many levels, and it made sense to keep working with them,” Brian said.
So he applied for the program and became part of a cohort of 77 tenacious community leaders from 13 countries in 2020.
The Facebook Community Accelerator program helped Fathering Together craft its messaging, amplify its voice, and meet other community leaders from around the globe. The group’s growth pushed Brian and Christopher to formally register Fathering Together as a nonprofit organization. And Brian was able to quit his day job to become Fathering Together’s first full-time employee.
A platform for the future
Besides providing a path forward, the Facebook Community Accelerator program also introduced Brian to GlobalGiving.
Since 2018, GlobalGiving has partnered with Meta to support the grantmaking portion of the program.
As Brian and Christopher were wrapping up Fathering Together’s participation in the Facebook Community Accelerator, the GlobalGiving team introduced them and other leaders in their cohort to GlobalGiving’s fundraising platform. In 2021, Fathering Together joined GlobalGiving and posted its first project on the site.
Fathering Together has now received more than 100 donations from individuals, some from complete strangers with no connection to Fathering Together except for the desire to support their mission. For small community-led organizations, this funding is easy to receive and vital to their growth.
“I’m still the only full-time person, and there are times when I don’t have time to send out an ask or an appeal, but I get on GlobalGiving and I can see we received a donation,” Brian said.
That lets Brian look toward the future. Soon, he’ll post a new project on GlobalGiving that focuses on supporting fathers in their school communities. The project will help fathers become active participants and key community members who are seen as more than just people who drop off their kids at school.
As Brian, Christopher, and the Fathering Together community take more steps for fathers, Brian always keeps his children as his north star: “The more you accept your children for who they are, life will be a lot easier and a lot more fun.”
Want to support community leaders for the long run? Learn how GlobalGiving’s grantmaking services can help your company make a lasting difference for local nonprofits.
Featured Photo: Brian Anderson and his family, published with permission by Fathering Together