The aim of the study is to describe and determine the factors impactacting on
township learners due to absent father. We have determined, that no study has
yet been done in South Africa regarding this topic. “The impact of absent fathers
on township learners”
The absent father is considered to cause a barrier to learners in their daily lives
given the challenges of life. His absence is perceived to have bred insecurity, a
lack of a primary male role model and a lack of masculine love, care and guidance.
The researcher is challenged to ask the following questions:
1) Can a child overcome feeling of abandonment, rejection and anger?
2) Are learners’ self-esteem affected when their fathers are absent?
3) If men forsake their families, will this action results in children suffering
psychological wounds becouse of being rejected and abandoned?
4) Can this cause ill-discipline, like refusal to take orders and authority?
5) Is church prepared to play a meaningful role?
Participants consisted of 8 adolescents, four boys and four girls from Phola
Township, local high school called Mabande H S School in Mpumalanga Province.
Data was collected by means of personal interviews and recorded. Special
consent letters were given to parents. A qualitative method was selected as an
inquiry process that is best suited to the understanding of the social or human
level. A questionnaire (structured interview) gave learners the opportunity to
express and share their own experiences and their inner most feelings of
The researcher was born and bred in a rural area but has worked as a minister of
religion in the Phola Township Pentecostal church for the past 16years. In his first
appointment after ordination, he acquired a teaching employment in a local
school in order to support himself.
The researcher as an educator for the past seven years has come across with
many traumatic cases emanating from this socio-economic challenged township.
Most of the cases in this economically challenged area, are cases in which
children are raised in single parent homes. In his role as school teacher, the
researcher observed and was challenged to further investigate, to what extent
having an absent father was impacting on learners who were coming from this