De La Salle College

Father’s Day Breakfast 2017 Speeches

­Father’s Day Breakfast 2017 Speech by James Biviano, College Captain

It gives me great pleasure to be able to stand up here this morning, to share a few words on what our fathers mean to us and the impact that they have in shaping us as the young men we are growing into.

We have this rare opportunity to recognise and reflect on just how much our fathers contribute to our lives. When a child is born, their father is their hero, their idol, and as you grow up your father is there by your side taking your first steps with you, and listening to your first words, your dad is at all your sporting commitments, and he’s your biggest supporter on and off the field, if you don’t believe in yourself dad is always there to knock that self-doubt out of your mind.

A father teaches his son everything from shaving to being courageous, a father teaches his son proper etiquette, instructing him to be honest and thankful, and he shapes his children into well-rounded members of society.

A passage from John 5:19 reads, “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does.

Our fathers are so influential on us, if we recognise it or not, we secretly aim to follow in their footsteps, and wherever we aim to go in life, we will go, taking the skills and lessons we have learnt from our fathers.

Two years ago dad decided we needed a pizza oven. Now, not just any pizza oven. We needed the ultimate Italian oven, where every brick on the inside dome had to be individually measured, marked and cut to fit, in order to act as a key. We worked on this oven every weekend for around eight months until it was operational, and it is a feat of engineering. It’s still not finished, it needs that third layer of insulation and then another dome of bricks for ‘looks’.

From this experience dad taught me valuable lessons; how do proper foundation, form work, paving, bricklaying, architecture for all those arches and getting all the measurements right. Now, Dad could have done all the hard bits himself, and the oven would have been finished much sooner, he could have taken all the measurements worked out the height and arch of the dome, built the formwork for the arches, measured all those angles, but then what would I have learnt? Dad took the extra time and patience to teach me, to better equip me for whatever challenges I may face down the track. This is one of many projects where Dad has taught me the tricks of the trade. Dad also takes on the painful task of helping me when I get frustrated with any technology, as I have been termed as a “TecTard”, and he always seems to magically fix the issue.

One night a father overheard his son pray:
Dear God, Make me the kind of man my Daddy is.
Later that night, the father prayed,
Dear God, Make me the kind of man my son wants me to be.”

Our fathers are not perfect, no one is perfect, however, they will never stop trying to be there for us, and to be the father that we need them to be, and that’s pretty close to perfection if you ask me.

A father will do everything he can, and provide all the tools he has so that his children can become better than him.” So this Father’s Day, show your dad that you appreciate everything he has done for you and show him that you always have his back because I can promise you he always has yours.

A quote from an unknown source that attempts to use words to describe our fathers reads, “He’s a pillar of strength, support and discipline. His work is endless and, often at times, thankless. But in the end, it shows in the sound, well-adjusted children he raises.”

Believe it or not but a father’s love is one of the strongest influences on a child’s development especially through adolescence and through to manhood. Knowing that you are loved by your father, is one of those priceless things in life, and we can often take our fathers for granted. Today, however, we have the opportunity to reflect and to be thankful for our fathers, we also have the opportunity to sympathise with those who don’t have a father figure in their lives, or for fathers who have lost sons

Dads — although we may not always show it, or admit to it — we love you for your never-ending support, your never-ending life lessons and terrible jokes.

The greatest gift I ever had came from God; I call him Dad. Thank you, Papa, for raising me to be who I am today. I love you.

James Biviano
College Captain (2018)

Elijah Kingsley speech on behalf of the ‘Yaluwo’ Immersion students

Good morning Mr Houlihan, staff, students and most importantly, Fathers. I hope you are all enjoying your breakfast. My name is Elijah Kingsley.

This year the ‘Yaluwo’ boys are going to the Sri Lanka Technical Institute and Diyagala Boy’s Town school.

The school provides boys from underprivileged and impoverished families with technical and life skills to enrich themselves for a meaningful life with a positive mindset. That is taken straight from the school’s mission statement. We have heard about what we as ‘Yaluwo’ participants can expect to experience. I am here to talk about one of our fundraising initiatives to raise money for the materials we will need to undertake and complete our improvement projects at Diyagala Boys Town.

You might have got an idea from the photos that the Diyagala boys don’t have much in the way of standard safety wear and we are told they don’t have many, if any, personal clothing items. They have clothes provided by the school for wearing at school. De La has asked us to donate our ‘work clothes’ and our old sports uniforms to the Diyagala boys, a very stinky prospect … nylon shirts in Sri Lanka’s heat and humidity — knowing me, that won’t result in a good smell.

Like the other ‘Yaluwo’ boys we have sold chocolates and will be selling sausages and having a curry night to raise funds. All of those activities involve us, our friends and families consuming, mostly food, which is fine, but we wanted to focus the fundraising to giving something personal, and not a necessity, to the Diyagala boys. So we came up with the idea of ‘buying’ a t-shirt for every boy at Boy’s Town. The t-shirts are not a uniform, they are a personal gift from us to them. I designed the t-shirts which depict a rendering of the Sri Lankan Raksha or demon mask used to ward off evil spirits, set in an outline of a map of Australia to signify the connection between De La Salle and Diyagala.

We are asking you to ‘buy’ a t-shirt for a boy at Diyagala which we will take to Sri Lanka and then gift to each boy. You will realize that you don’t get the t-shirt, we buy the t-shirts with your support.

We had a great launch of our project at the De La Salle Race Day last week, where the winning jockey on the day, Craig Williams, a father at De La, supported the initiative by tweeting it out to his many followers. We ‘sold’ 26 t-shirts on the day. Only 105 to go! So, I am asking you to support our ‘fundraiser’ by buying a Diyagala boy a t-shirt today. We need your support. We don’t want anyone to miss out. Given there are over a 1000 students at De La Salle, we think we can get just 160 of you, or your fathers, to buy an underprivileged boy in Sri Lanka a t-shirt for $20.

Dads, students, teachers even, make yourself feel great today. Please come and see me and my Yaluwo colleagues at the conclusion of breakfast and buy a boy a t-shirt.

We had a great response at the Father’s Day Breakfast. If you would like to buy a t-shirt you can pay by direct EFT transfer to:

Account: Engelina Susan Van Dyk
Bank: Commonwealth
BSB: 063212
Account No: 10092270

Make sure you include the reference: “Yaluwo” and your name

If you would like a receipt, include your name in the EFT, then email the receipt to: susanvandyk@bigpond.com with subject ‘Yaluwo receipt’

We thank you for helping us to achieve our goal.

Elijah Kingsley
Year 12 – Leo’s 4