Today is a unique conversation with the icon, the magical, the infamous…Santa Claus! Creating magic for children for the past 34yrs as a “professional Santa”, he has been employed by the iconic Myer Brand in Australia for 30yrs to tote his white beard and nurturing spirit upon all children who grace his lap!
But who is the man underneath the suit?
Rod Hyatt, at age 74, has been a passionate philanthropist for more than 10 years after he finished teaching English and become the Chairman of Habit for Humanity. He is committed to addressing the plight of people who do not sleep securely at night.
He has gone on to continue his work in a more focussed way under the banner of Hope ReBuilders and I cannot wait to hear more about the ongoing work he is doing…especially during this past Covid year.
The Goods on Santa Rod:
Professional Santa for 34 years and with the Myer Centre for 30 years, with a small stint in Japan in 1998 when I was on TV and played Santa in the Japanese production of Enid Blyton's " Naughtiest School Girl"
Now, back to the man underneath the cloth…
I have a wealth of experience & knowledge across many of fields, after 74 trips around the sun. 12 years ago it was time to give back and get involved in addressing the plight of people who do not sleep securely at night. Habitat For Humanity had been a favourite NFP Organisation since the Northridge Earthquake in Los Angeles 17 January 1994. Retirement from the Education sector allowed time to become more supportive where I became involved in starting up the Brisbane Chapter, served as Chairman of the Queensland affiliate and then stepped into a management role after the 2011 South East Queensland floods.
May 2013 - Having spent 2 years as Development Manager for Habitat For Humanity Brisbane, I spread my wings and moved into a role where I can be of service to a wider community of people needing safe secure housing. My passion has not changed. In fact it has deepened to a point where I believe the current Habitat model is not effective in fully addressing the problem. We need to get back to a more "grassroots" approach in line with Millard Fuller's original dream of partnership housing - a place where people are more important than personalities - a place where God's work is not corporatised - a place where we can be more flexible and nimble in helping the vulnerable members of our community.
September 2013 - Chief Operating Officer of Fuller Center for Housing, Queensland, Australia, following the lead of Millard Fuller, the founder of both Habitat for Humanity and Fuller Center for Housing, in getting back to a more grassroots approach to tackling the problem of substandard housing.
April 2018 - I am continuing on the work started all those years ago by Millard Fuller. We are still addressing the needs of those who are less fortunate and who have been socially marginalised. Having recently undergone a name change to Hope ReBuilders we are relaunching with a new vision and vigour for better addressing the situation in Australia nad South East Asia.
Contact Santa Rod:
Go to http://www.bit.ly/InTheGamePodcast
to become part of this growing community of DREAMERS!