Elizabeth Svoboda, the author of What Makes a Hero says, “New research is lending texture and credence to what generations of story tellers have known in their bones – that books, poems, movies and real life stories can affect the way we think and even, by extension, the way we act. As the late US poet laureate, Stanley Kunitz puts it in The Layers, “I have walked through many lives, some of them my own, and I am not who I was”.”
The dream of Dads4Kids is to help children by encouraging Dads to become better Dads. But how to do this?
The simplest way is to allow men to tell their stories about the challenges of becoming a father and how they spend time with their own children. The most effective way to do that, and reach the maximum number of people, is to do it in picture form, by video, TV and YouTube.
Dads4Kids is excited to report that our new TV Community Service Announcement is being played on 6 major regional and national networks across Australia.
Many Australian Dads will testify that as a result of seeing the Dads4Kids CSAs on TV, “I am not who I was”. More importantly their children will also report, “My Dad has changed. He is playing with me more and reading me stories. I am not who I was – I am better”.
One of the Dads featured in our new advert is Adam de Rooy, a proud 26 year old father of two children. He is full of candid wisdom beyond his years. See his story in Father’s Tales featured below.
I asked Adam his top three hints for being a great dad. The first one he gave is on the YouTube, but is worth repeating.
1. If you fail as a father, don’t worry. Roll with the punches. If you get knocked down just get back up. Yes, you will make mistakes. None of us gets an instructional manual at the hospital. We get a license to drive a car, after 100 hours experience, but as a father this is a case of learning on the job and from others.
Take each day as it comes
and enjoy the journey.
Don’t worry, be happy.
Your children need you.
2. Watch other dads and learn from them. Looking back, I realised I learned a lot from other Dads, even as a teenager. I played soccer when I was a fifteen year old in a social comp. Every year, the captain, who was a Dad in his early forties with a number of children gave out awards at the end of the year. With each award he gave he used to write some inspirational words of encouragement. I didn’t realise it at the time, but he was setting me up for success later in life when I became a father, just with his words. I am part of a church and part of a wonderful family. Subconsciously I am absorbing lessons in life from those around me. I have an older friend who is a very committed dad with three children. He is a few years ahead of me and I am learning all the time from him. He is who I want to be, so I have a vision of the future in the form of a friend.
Make sure you surround yourself
with the people you want to become like,
because that’s who you will be.
3. As I said in the YouTube video, being a Dad has taught me the next level of being selfless and learning how to sacrifice. I thought I was pretty selfless when I was single and getting married made me learn a whole new level of sacrifice. I thought I was reasonably selfless as a husband but when we brought our first baby home from hospital, I went through a whole new level of learning to give up my first priority which of course is me. We can talk about humility but I agree that being a good Dad requires a whole ‘nuther level of humility and self-sacrifice. The act of loving your wife and having children together takes your love to new heights because the part of each other that you have together, makes you as a couple love each all the more.
Being a Dad requires
a whole ‘nuther level of humility
Two pieces of homework this week if I may?
1. Take Adam’s words to heart and put them into practise – they are so good.
2. Dads4Kids needs your help. We need $25,000 to get our TV adverts finished and into the right hands, and get wonderful stories like the one above from Adam de Rooy, and Mark Gebadi out there to encourage Dads and help children. Several TV stations are playing the new Dads4Kids advert (see News & Info for the stations), we have 800 views on YouTube for the 60 second advert and 235 for the shorter versions and 9,183 views on Facebook.
All this is a miracle!
So far we have received two donations amounting to a total of $240 – only $24,760 to go.
One loyal supporter gave $200. That’s a lot of money for a train driver!
A big thank you to those two wonderful dads who have given so generously. If everyone who reads this newsletter each week gave $50 in the next seven days, we would easily double our Father’s Day fundraising goal.
Father’s Day is in a week’s time and your family is going to give to you. How about you make an investment in the children of Australia?