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“Festival celebrates fathers and engages community”
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“Festival celebrates fathers and engages community”

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Harnoor Gill picOn Father’s Day we show respect and appreciation for the role fathers play, but as Harnoor Gill, 17, a Commonwealth Correspondent from Georgetown in Canada, notes, it can also be a day for community celebration.

My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person, he believed in me.” – Jim Valvano.

Jim Valvano was an American college basketball coach. He was also a great inspiration to others around him through his everyday teachings within the sport of basketball as well as his leadership at life. I believe that his quote is inspiring for this year’s Father’s Day, because it reflects upon how your father is always going to be there for you no matter what.

My local community celebrates the importance of fathers in a unique way. We dedicate a festival to them know as the ‘Big Daddy Festival’. The festival is an opportunity for youth to volunteer at the event, hang out with your father, and learn more about the opportunity to take part in local events at places across the region.

This year’s Father’s Day events will be on the 19th, 20th and 21st of June across a number of communities of my home region, Halton Hills. These are unique events at all of these locations, such as having fun in nature at Willow Park Ecology Centre in Norval or learning more about the community around you at the Acton library. The community of Glen Williams is locally famous for its representation at the Big Daddy Festival with their Chill Zone, and don’t forget about Georgetown with their Farmer’s Market Bash!

I gladly admit that I love this event, as I have been participating for the past three years. I can’t wait to participate in it this year again to celebrate Father’s Day. Like others who attend the festival, I take this as a day to appreciate what my father has done for me, as well as to spend time with him in keeping with the theme. On this day, I personally give my dad something unique each year. I put a lot of thought into selecting the gift, because it makes him happy that I am proud to be his son. Father’s Day is all about respecting your dad for everything he has done for you by taking care of you – even having to deal with you when you’re not in the best mood. So, let’s appreciate each other and celebrate!

Most communities are starting to get into the culture of celebrating Father’s Day as a community-based event. They celebrate in recognition of the role of fathers, but also because the festival activities create local entertainment and even engagement which drives a community forward. Our community of Halton Hills portrays that philosophy and experience throughout the renowned festival on our downtown core.

I have experienced many different things throughout the three years that I have been involved with the Big Daddy festival. I have learned how to engage with others better, I have learned about other cultures that I wasn’t aware about before, and I even danced on stage at one point, doing a traditional Indian dance for the first time. I can’t wait to see what’s for store in this year’s Big Daddy Festival, considering that I have accomplished so much in these last three years!

Kudos to all Dads and a Happy Father’s day to you all!

photo credit: media_ 40 via photopin (license)
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About me: I am a student in Georgetown, Canada, and founder of the Peace Welcome Club. I love to volunteer, read, write, and play basketball. I volunteer with local environmental and youth organizations and am dedicated to raising awareness about youth volunteering. My writing has been published in Indo-Canadian Voice, Asian Journal, Times of India, The Independent & Free Press, and in Amazing Kids! Magazine.

https://www.facebook.com/PeaceWelcomeClub

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Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth Youth Programme. Articles are published in a spirit of dialogue, respect and understanding. If you disagree, why not submit a response.
To learn more about becoming a Commonwealth Correspondent please visit: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org/submit-articles/commonwealthcorrespondents/

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