The Fathering Project was born when a professor of respiratory medicine noticed the dying men he was treating often had the same one regret: they had not spent enough time with their children.
That doctor was 2013 West Australian of the year Bruce Robinson, who in the same year co-founded the Fathering Project, an ongoing effort to strengthen the bond between father figures and children through activities, networks and tips on how to be more engaged in school life.
On Wednesday, the Fathering Project will officially be launched in the North West, with five local primary schools, Oxley Vale, Attunga, Quirindi, Gunnedah and Tamworth South joining 300 others nationwide.
Local coordinator Paul Briscoe said the project is all about strengthening the relationships between father figures and children.
"Children with stronger father figures are less likely to face drug and alcohol issues, mental health issues and perform better at school," he said.
"We are trying to close the gap in those statistics, and help fathers navigate the issues that they face in the modern day world."
The project works with schools to form Champion Dad Groups, where fathers, or father figures, of children meet four times a year - twice for Dad and Kids nights, and two more nights "simply to talk about how their fathering journey is going."
Some of the Dad and Kids night activities include paper planes and pizza, or bingo and bangers, where fathers spend simple time playing with their kids.
"We want the dads to network as a community, and we want the dads that are doing well to link arms with the ones that aren't, and lift together - it is a gathering of wisdom and shared experiences," Mr Briscoe said.
"Studies show that dedicated father child time each day minimises the risks of drug and alcohol issues and mental health, and increases school performance and cognitive abilities.
"Together, we can be better as a community."
The Fathering Project will hold it's launch at West Leagues Club in Tamworth on Wednesday, July 31 from 5.30pm.