21 September 2014

Andrew overcame adversity for his children

Posted in Family life

He overcame an alleged assault in November 2006 that left him near death, with severe brain and spinal cord injuries that resulted in paraplegia.

Despite his difficult path to recovery, this incredible father placed his children’s needs above his own.

Meet Andrew Butwell… father to four, paraplegic, and the 2014 Queensland Father of the Year.

Andrew returned to work within six months of his assault, and in 2012, he earned his Masters of Mental Health Nursing. He is on the board of directors for Mantle Housing, which provides permanent, safe and affordable homes for people living with mental illness.

Andrew has managed several junior rugby league teams – organising uniforms, fees, and the end-of-season camps and excursions.

Upon accepting the award, Andrew gave an insight into how he approaches fatherhood. “[For me, it’s about] having the time to listen to your kids and not be critical of when things go wrong and just sit and listen and try and work it out,” Andrew said.

Andrew’s father, Brad Butwell, nominated him for the award. “I am very proud of Andrew. I thought he was a very worthwhile person to nominate for this,” Brad says.

“He’s an example for what can be done by disabled people and we thank him for it,” Brad says.

Hosted by SU QLD in partnership with RSL Queensland, the Queensland Father of the Year award honours outstanding fathers for their exceptional commitment to raising their children or for their exemplary contribution to the development of children in the community.

Nominations were received from children and community members all over the state for dads who are seen to be excelling in fatherhood.

Andrew wins five night’s accommodation at Sea World Resort and Water Park along with unlimited entry to Movieworld, Seaworld and Wet’n’Wild for the family during their stay, compliments of Village Roadshow Theme Parks.


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