Football event meets fun-and-bonding goal

A goal to engage fathers more in school life was a clear win when Good Shepherd Catholic Primary Hoxton Park held a two-night soccer event for students and their dads.

About 54 students and their fathers participated in fun soccer drills and activities at Cook Park, home ground of the Mounties Wanderers FC, with the semi-professional team’s coaches and players on June 5 and 6.

The ‘Dad and I’ event was organised by Good Shepherd’s family educator Jackie Hana, and hosted by Mounties Group’s sport administrator Glen Ingle.

“This experience was an opportunity for fathers from Good Shepherd to make and strengthen connections with other dads from our school,” Mrs Hana said. “The non-competitive soccer evening provided quality interaction time where fathers engaged with their children and created lasting memories.”

Principal Brendan O’Connor said the event was a wonderful opportunity for the dads in the school community to come together with their children for a night of fun, fitness and bonding.

“We would like to thank Mr Glen Ingle and all the team at Mounties Group, as well as the Mounties players, for organising such a special evening that the families from Good Shepherd Hoxton Park could attend,” he said.

It was the best, I didn’t want to go home.

–  Brendan Natale

Mr Ingle said the Mounties team also found the event fun.

“The club’s coaching staff and players enjoyed interacting with the dads and children over the two nights,” he said. “It was inspiring to see the children and dads laughing and interacting with each other in fun activities outdoors.”

One of the Fathers who participated, Alejandro Bugedo, said the event ticked many boxes.

“To engage with my daughter in an organised team-based effort gave me a chance to bond with Valentina on a different level,” he said. “Valentina was extremely excited leading up to the night and was happy to challenge me at the one-on-one and scoring goals activities.”

Alvaro Sanchez thanked the organisers of the event for the opportunity to be more involved in school life.

“It’s good to see dads coming together considering mums are the ones usually involved in school experiences,” he said. “The boys and I had a great time.”

The students who took part were equally impressed by the event.

“It was the best, I didn’t want to go home,” said Brendan Natale. “My favourite drill was when I had to get the ball off my dad and I beat him.”

Ozioma Ogu agreed. “I loved the way that fathers and their children can spend quality time together playing a sport most people enjoy,” she said.

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