A cheery crowd of 450 fathers and their sons gathered on a chilly Thursday winter’s morning this week for the Schnauer and Co-sponsored 2017 Westlake Father Son Breakfast. Students Sam Baker and Blake Nicholson remarked on this event being a favourite among students, who have the opportunity to bring their fathers into school for a morning and enjoy a scrumptious breakfast.
Guests enjoyed an inspiring presentation by local North Shore identity Cam Calkoen who spoke to the audience on the benefits of living with a positive attitude and the impact this has made on his life as a person born with cerebral palsy. Sam and Blake thought that Cam was truly inspirational. He shared stories of how growing up with cerebral palsy has affected his life, but also how he has not let it get in his way of achieving his dreams. Cam has represented New Zealand in athletics and found success as a professional speaker, and spoke to those attending about how they can all achieve excellence and take pride in what they do, no matter what the circumstances.
Cam lives by Robert Schuller’s quote “Build a dream and the dream will build you”. AWESOME is his favourite word and clearly it has rubbed off on the life he has chosen to live – he thinks positive thoughts, builds dreams, embraces opportunities, embraces his uniqueness and, as a result, exceeds his expectations. Cam encourages us all to “Dream Big, Achieve More to Live an Awesome Life”.
As well as inspiring the audience, Cam also entertained everyone with his funny stories, including how his Dad helped him out with a piece of chewing gum which enabled him to participate successfully in an egg and spoon race; his egg defying gravity as it ended up underneath the spoon at the finish line. He had us all trying to picture a pole vaulter with no arms until he said “only joking”!
Our sincere thanks to event sponsor, Westlaker Nick Kearney and the team at Schnauer and Co Barristers and Solicitors, and to event supporters Sanitarium, Yummy Apples, The Spencer on Byron Hotel, Lone Star Restaurants, Stirling Sport Takapuna and TyreTech Archers Road. Thanks too to Mr Butler, Mrs Jorgenson and members of the Westlake Distance Running group who did a great job with event set up, serving and waiting duties. Thank you to those fathers and sons who attended, and Cam, for his motivational words; we hope to continue the success of this unique event in years to come.
If you are involved with any group or organisation who would benefit from Cam’s inspiring presentation, he can be contacted via his website at www.camcalkoen.com
To view all the event photos please go to our school Flickr album via the Flickr logo (Blue circle with two white spots) at the top of the school website. Thank you to Tracey McKay and Year 13 student Hyunsang Lim for capturing the event with these great shots.