Putting together the Dads4Kids Community Service Announcements is always an exciting time for me. It is an honour to film fathers in their natural habitat with their children. It is both an inspiring and humbling experience for me. The previous TV adverts would be hard to beat!
In an eight-day period we videoed 24 fathers and their families in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. Twenty fathers made the cut. Those twenty fathers had 90 children between them, an average of 4.5 children per family. However, two of those dads had 10 children each whilst another two dads had 9 children each. This certainly bumped up the average!
What was particularly exciting for me was that for this advert two Indigenous dads and their children were featured. Our family has spent a lot of time over the years working with Australia’s first nation people having personally played music in over 100 Aboriginal communities all over the nation. The media does not portray Aboriginal dads in a very good light so Dads4Kids hopes to change that perception with these adverts.
Check out the new Dads4Kids 60 sec advert here or below
Over the next two weeks in the lead up to Father’s Day Dads4Kids will feature four of the fathers and their families from the adverts on YouTube.
Today I want to introduce you to Shane Banning and his son Aiden who is nine years old. Aiden has all the hallmarks of becoming a champion skateboarder. His father surfs and skates and has been driving his son every week from Wollongong to pro-skateboard lessons in Sydney – a massive commitment.
I rang Shane today to tell him the adverts were up on YouTube and found him, true to form, having a father and son skating holiday at Port Macquarie skate park on the NSW North Coast.
I asked Shane to share his top three ‘good dad tips’ with you.
This is what Shane had to say:
1. Invest time with your children. Nothing beats spending one on one time with your children. I do this with my son who is nine and my daughter who is twelve going on twenty. Soon they won’t want me to do it so I spend time with them while I am still ‘top of the pops’.
2. Allow your children to take healthy risks. Don’t wrap them in bubble wrap. They need to get covered in mud from time to time. They need to climb trees and skin their knees. No pain, no gain. Get them ready for life because life can be painful.
3. The greatest thing you can do for your children is love your wife and display that love, don’t hide it. Your children will thrive when your marriage thrives. My wife and I married for life. We have our challenges, but we work through them and we don’t look back. My own mother and father have been married for over 50 years and are still madly in love and I want to give that heritage to my own children.
The second dad I want to feature is Hayden Gillies from Warrnambool, Victoria. Hayden is Dad to 9 children from 27 to 7 years old, three boys and six girls. His youngest girl, at 7 years old, features in the advert with the puppies who love to kiss humans, much to Dad and daughter’s disgust. The shot is priceless!
Hayden’s 25 year old son, Jordan Gillies, is a champion motocross rider. We wanted to shoot some father and son somersaults, 10 metres in the air but figured any mothers watching our ad would hyperventilate. We declined the opportunity. Watch this clip if you dare.
With such an amazing family I had to ask Hayden Gillies his top three tips for raising a great family.
1. Have fun with your children. I was not good at it in my early years because I was too serious, but you can work at it. Life is exciting. Life is an adventure. Make it the same for your children. Having fun with your family is the eleventh commandment.
2. You have to put a priority on loving your wife. Again, you have to work at it. Your children will be strong, if your relationship with your wife is strong. I keep telling my kids to be thankful because your mother and I are in this till death do us part. Marriage is for keeps. Family is for keeps. Your children need to know that, so make sure you tell them. They will be stronger for it.
3. I love Jesus and because I do, my kids do too. Men are spiritual leaders and they have to walk the walk and talk the talk. How else will your children know God as their heavenly Father if who you are, and what you do, doesn’t line up with the Maker’s Handbook? Fun, faith and love – without these your family is going nowhere and neither are you. As the man said, “Just do it”.
Wow! Such advice from two profoundly committed dads is hard to beat.
Guess what your lovework is this week?
That’s right, we have to put Shane and Hayden’s advice into practice!
My second piece of homework is to let you know that we have to raise $25,000 for our Father’s Day Appeal. Dads4Kids is looking for some men who will put up some seed funding to help us get across the line. We need $13,000 in matching grants on the basis that our supporters will double the amount and we can reach our target.
To produce our three TV Community Service Announcements and get them to the TV stations it is costing Dads4Kids $22,500 and we need extra to do media releases for Father’s Day. $25,000 is our total goal for Father’s Day 2016.
Help the children of Australia.
Yours for our children
Let’s make a difference for the next generation.