All Blacks team up with Unicef to promote new 'Super Dads' campaign
The All Blacks have teamed up with Unicef to celebrate the most important job in the world – being a dad.
As much of the world celebrates Fathers' Day, Unicef has enlisted sporting superstars like F1 driver Lewis Hamilton, David Beckham and All Blacks Israel Dagg, Wyatt Crockett, and Sam Whitelock to share their experiences of fatherhood.
Fathers are crucial to early childhood development, but more than half of children between 3 and 4 years-old in 74 countries have fathers who do not play or engage with them, Unicef analysis shows.
Their Super Dad's campaign message is simple: you don't need superpowers to be a super dad; just eat, play and love to build your baby's brain.
The campaign comes after New Zealand placed 34th – behind Greece, Hungary and Lithuania, in a ranking of child health and wellbeing released by Unicef last week.
The report tracks the progress on goals such as reducing child poverty, inequality and deprivation and improving things like education and health for children.
Unicef said New Zealand's presence in the bottom end of the rankings was proof that "high national income is no guarantee of a good record in sustaining child wellbeing."
Unicef is calling on all supporters to follow the All Blacks lead and share a photo or a video about what it means for them to be a Super Dad using the #EarlyMomentsMatter hashtag.
"The earliest years of life present a critical, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to shape children's brain development – and it's their parents who hold the largest stake in this process," Unicef Chief of Early Childhood Development Pia Britto said.
"The more fathers, mothers and other family members shower their babies and young children with love, play, good nutrition and protection, the better these children's chances are of reaching optimal health, happiness and learning ability."