Falkirk man's animation flags up heartbreak of '˜forgotten' dads

A Falkirk student who says he watched a relative battle for years to secure access to his son has created a digital protest video to highlight what he sees as injustice to dads.

In his animation, which is at https://tinyurl.com/TFC-FNFS, Lewis Rickard (22) uses words from a poem by author Louis de Bernières to promote the campaigning agenda of the group Families Need Fathers.

He said: “The issue of parental rights has been close to my heart for many years.

Most people who don’t have first hand knowledge of the process through someone close to them don’t appreciate how painful it is.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

“This gave me inspiration to create an animation that could be understood easily by both separated parents, and also by children.”

He added: “I contacted FNF last year and attended one of their group meetings so I could gain an understanding of what other dads and mothers were going through.

“Not being able to see their children - either not seeing them at all or restricted to every other weekend, effectively as a visitor, not a parent.”.

“This was a great experience for me and allowed me to get a deeper insight into how the charity works.

“It also gave me the chance to ask questions to the parents so I could try to understand what each person is going through”.

He made the animation as part of his final year honours BSC Digital Media project at Napier University.

Ian Maxwell, national manager of FNF Scotland, said: We are very impressed by the animation Lewis has created.

“There is a Scottish Government consultation underway at the moment on reforming the law on making arrangements for the involvement of parents with their children after separation.

“We need to win hearts among the public as well as minds and Lewis’s animation brilliantly captures the feelings of loss and helplessness many separated parents feel.

“We are very grateful to him for thinking of us”.