While humbled to be recognised as devoted dad, Hamish said it was “probably a bit odd for my kids who ironically don’t get to vote. But to me, this isn’t about winning anything, it’s simply a chance to highlight the amazing opportunity we have as dads, mentors, or father figures to help shape the future for our kids.”
Hamish said being a good father is just as much about the little things.
“With the work I’ve done talking to other dads I am always the most inspired by the dads doing the little things, rather than big sweeping gestures, because that’s where you remember that “fathering” is a constant, daily practice, and one we’re lucky to get to do for the rest of our life,” he said. “To me nothing is more important.”
The awards are presented by The Fathering Project, a not-for-profit organisation focused on giving children the best life possible through engaged and effective fathers.
“Hamish delivers a powerful fatherhood message through sharing his personal journey,” said The Fathering Project CEO Káti Gapaillard. “He encourages dads to connect authentically, acknowledging that perfection isn’t the goal but rather emphasises learning from one another to be the best possible support for our children – spending quality time each day with your child is what really matters.”
Hamish and his wife Zoë married in 2012 and share two children (pictured above), son Sonny, eight, and daughter Rudy, five.
“For me being present, creating a space for fun and adventure, and being totally accepting of who my kids are as people is what I strive to do, and how I hope they feel safe and loved,” said Hamish. “I get it wrong frequently, in ways I’m well aware of. I think it’s healthy to be honest about how much we’re still learning, whilst also knowing how important it is to try just as hard tomorrow.”
“We can all take inspiration from the zest for life that Hamish brings to all he does, his creative, fun-loving humour and the adventurous ideas he freely shares on his podcasts and social media platforms. Hamish definitely shows us the joys of fathering and the many long-lasting benefits dads can bring to their children.
“My message for all dads this Father’s Day is that you are doing a great job, I am in no position to preach but I think about this all the time, and it snaps me back to recognise that no matter what is going on, we are always making mistakes. I have hundreds of days when I sit back and think I could have done this a lot better. I’m excited to continue growing and learning as a dad, and I hope to inspire others to embrace the wonderful adventure that fatherhood brings.”
Australian Father of the Year Awards
Sports Father of the Year 2023 is Paul Wilton from Gold Coast, Queensland, who is a father of three biological children, a stepfather to six, and plays an extended fathering role through football coaching to a group of young athletes. Paul himself navigated through some difficult childhood years and took up football coaching, pouring his energy into teaching and coaching valuable life skills to students to help them navigate life, build teamwork, and respect to take into their future lives. Paul says,” I was so humbled to receive this award which I wish to share with all fathers across Australia, to remind them of the very important role we all have to play in our children’s lives”
Community Father of the Year 2023 is Dodzi Kpodo from Coffs Harbour in NSW who is a father, stepfather, community leader, sports coach and mentor for many in his community, and more recently a guardian of his younger sister following the passing of their father. Dodzi who grew up in a refugee camp and arrived in Australia in 2010 as a refugee from Ghana Africa has turned his early life around after a tough start, to become the father he has always dreamed to be – supporting his blended family, alongside the local refugee community, and lending considerable personal time to assisting the elderly in the Community who need help from lawn mowing to computer technical needs.
Australia’s Best Workplace for Father’s was Hollard Insurance.
About The Fathering Project: The Fathering Project is a national charity which transforms children’s lives by running education programs through over 1,000 schools and corporate engagement projects that support and empower Dads to be present and support their children. Research shows children with an engaged father or father figure have significantly better social, mental, physical, and academic outcomes. Read more at www.thefatheringproject.org.