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The Only Greater Champion Than Novak Djokovic the Tennis Player is Novak Djokovic the Father

Djokovic has done his research and is working to give kids opportunities at the most developmentally critical time in their lives.

Every time you like and share this post, Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 (per social action), up to $500,000, via the Global Moms Relay to help improve the health and well-being of families worldwide in support of Shot@Life, UNFPA, Girl Up, UNICEF USA, and Nothing But Nets.

Parenting is the most beautiful and yet one of the hardest jobs we will ever have. Becoming a father for the first time to Stefan also made me realise it is the most important job I will ever have. When Jelena and I found out we were expecting, I made a promise to myself and my unborn baby that I would love him unconditionally, provide him with safety and security, and give him the best experiences and memories I could provide. I wanted Stefan to have a start life full of enriching moments and love to help lay a strong foundation for his future.

Fatherhood has changed who I am; my relationship with Stefan has made me want to help all children realize their dreams.

Fatherhood has changed who I am; my relationship with Stefan has made me want to help all children realize their dreams. This is something I have always been passionate about and it is because of this that I launched the Novak Djokovic Foundation back in 2007. The Foundation aims to allow children from disadvantaged communities to grow up, play, and develop in stimulating, creative, and safe settings while learning to respect others and care for their environment.

Research and advancements in neuroscience have taught us that the earliest years of life present a critical, once in a lifetime opportunity to shape children’s brain development. Parents are the ones who hold the largest stake in this process. Children’s health, happiness, well-being, ability to learn, and even earning capacity as adults are influenced or even determined by their external environments and experiences in early childhood. The benefits of good parenting include better cognitive, social, and emotional development. Research also suggests that when children positively interact with fathers, in particular, they have better psychological health, self-esteem and life satisfaction in the long-term.

The evidence started to make sense when I saw the direct effect that my actions, the environment I provide, the food I give, and all the quality moments I spend with Stefan

The evidence started to make sense when I saw the direct effect that my actions, the environment I provide, the food I give, and all the quality moments I spend with Stefan have on his growth and development. Playing games, singing, reading, providing varied and nutritious meals, loving, and nurturing Stefan means in the short-term he laughs, feels joy, learns faster, imitates, and becomes more creative and imaginative. Knowing that the rewards of these relatively simple actions will be life-changing for him makes every moment I spend with him even more important.

Despite all this concrete evidence, there is still a significant lack of support, especially for fathers. Parents across the world should feel empowered to take a stand against barriers such as societal or cultural stereotypes preventing them from spending precious moments with their children. The responsibility lies with all of us, businesses and governments included, to support parents and caregivers in their communities with the time, resources, and information they need. By breaking down these barriers, all fathers and mothers will have the opportunity to give their children a better chance of reaching their optimal health, happiness, and learning ability.

This Father’s Day, let’s get behind UNICEF’s #EarlyMomentsMatter campaign to celebrate fatherhood and all the super dads out there striving to make a difference. And let’s make a promise to help encourage and support fathers to help them shape their children’s lives for the better. We need action from scientists, doctors, nurses and community health workers to expand the services they offer to families and broaden the lens beyond health to include all of the different factors that together help shape and define young brains. We need action from those who hold the greatest stake in children’s development — parents and caregivers — to build an enriching an environment free from shouting and violence. An environment where caregivers use every opportunity they can to pay loving attention to their babies or to read or sing whenever the moment arises. Because these early moments matter more than any others.

Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic is considered one of the greatest tennis players of all time. To date, Djokovic has won a total of 66 career titles, including 12 Grand Slams, five ATP tour finals, a Davis Cup title, and he was a medalist at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.

He was appointed UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador with a special focus on the issues of vulnerable children and their communities in August 2015. His unquestionable commitment to philanthropy is evident through the work of the Novak Djokovic Foundation, a global organization that champions and invests in early childhood education and development, both in Serbia and internationally, and his previous position as a UNICEF Serbia Ambassador.

Novak Djokovic is a true champion for children around the world. He has proven that a powerful voice speaking on behalf of important, global initiatives can make a real difference to the lives of children from an early age.

You share, they give: Each time you ‘like’ or share this post via the social media icons on this post, watch this video or comment below, Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 (per social action), up to $500,000 divided equally between Shot@Life, UNFPA, Girl Up, UNICEF USA and Nothing But Nets. The Global Moms Relay was created by the United Nations Foundation and Johnson & Johnson with support from BabyCenter, Fatherly, Global Citizen, and Charity Miles to help improve the lives of families around the globe. Share this post with the hashtags #GlobalMoms and #JNJ, and visit to learn more.

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