Pushing For Social Good By Connecting Dads Online

Simon Isaacs with his family.
Simon Isaacs with his family.

With ample experience tackling societal inequalities head-on by building partnerships and negotiating support for disaster response efforts for the United Nations, as well as leading international development efforts for the Clinton Foundation, new dad Simon Isaacs is now putting his passion for positive change to use in a whole new way.

As the co-founder of Fatherly, a new nation-wide digital lifestyle guide geared towards men entering parenthood, Isaacs has been busy balancing his burgeoning start-up, as well as life with his now 3-month-old baby daughter.

“A few years ago my wife and I were beginning to build our family and she signed up for all the traditional sites and of course, I followed suit,” Isaacs, who’s based in Park Slope, Brooklyn, says. “I realized that everything out there was pink, purple, or turquoise. There are about 4.2 million mom blogs out there and nothing that focused on men.”

As well as thoughtful, informative articles, Fatherly offers age and stage information along the parenting life cycle from “Thinking about Kids” to 24+ months and beyond—and it’s this variety of content that makes Fatherly the first of its kind.

Though the popular site has a distinct focus on dads and dads-to-be, Fatherly is also a great resource for mothers, friends, and other family members. The inspiration for Fatherly was genuinely rooted in the changing parenting trends that Isaacs had noticed developing over the last several decades.

“We are seeing the vast majority of children today growing up in dual-income households—approximately 59 percent—and we’re seeing men getting involved in their children’s lives like never before,” Isaacs explains. “Men have started to take an interest in purchasing decisions and have definitely become more engaged with their children at home, at school, and in the community.”

Isaacs hopes to use his experience with managing non-profit organizations—as well as managing the editorial aspects, business operations, and sponsors at Fatherly—to guide him in the hands-on experience of being a new parent himself.

“For me, personally, I also believe there’s a huge social impact factor,” Isaacs says. “Now with the creation of Fatherly, we are looking at social impact in a very different way. We believe that we can provide authentic content, high-quality resources, tools, and even products that can help men navigate this new world.”

In alignment with Isaacs’ personal commitment to social good, a major part of the burgeoning start-up is its Fatherly Fund. The Fatherly Fund, an innovative way of giving back to the site’s followers, grants $1,000 every month to an individual who will create a personal project designed to help a family member in need.

Although Isaacs is certainly keeping busy with Fatherly, he also has been taking the time to welcome his baby daughter, Kaia, into the world. Isaacs, who was previously a professional marathon runner, who even ran around the world in 2007 to raise awareness for safe drinking water, has been trying to instill his passion for the outdoors into his daughter any way that he can.

“I’m not always sure when the day actually starts with a [3-month-old] baby,” Isaacs jokes. “Typically, my wife and I have been getting up around 5:30am. Once my wife feeds Kaia, I take her and our dog on an hour-and-a-half walk around the neighborhood. It’s a great way to give my wife rest, as well as get my daughter outside in the morning.”

The ever-growing nature of Fatherly, which currently has a staff of eight, combined with Isaacs’ just-beginning journey down the path of fatherhood has left the Middlebury graduate with many reasons to be consistently tired—but more so, tremendously grateful.

“The fact that my wife and I were able to create this beautiful, happy, and healthy child is joy enough,” he says. “The biggest joy is that the absolute miracle of life happened. The second biggest joy is when you look at your child and realize that she is well-taken care of, comfortable, and truly loved.”

To learn more about Fatherly, visit fatherly.com.