As Father’s Day approaches, many people are thinking about the important roles that fathers, and fatherhood, play in their own lives. For Fodada founder Bobby Barzi, that isn’t a topic that comes up just once a year — it’s an issue that drives his philanthropic business every single day.
Fodada, which launched in 2012 and operates out of the ROC Newport Beach location, is a clothing company that uses its profits to support fathers locally and around the world. The name comes from Barzi’s older son, who said “fodada” to mean “for dad” when he was one and a half years old.
“I think the concept of a great dad is not being promoted, supported and celebrated as much as it should, and wanted Fodada to begin that conversation,” Barzi said. “[We want to] be there for those that see the importance of this concept, and nudge those that need to be made more aware of it.”
Barzi also started the company to show his two sons that “it’s ok and possible to follow your passion… and do good all at the same time.”
Fodada’s clothing hits two key concepts for the modern dad: comfort and style. As Barzi puts it, it is the type of clothing that “you look for in your laundry hamper.” The line consists of t-shirts, sweatshirts and accessories for dads, moms and kids. The triblend shirts and sweaters are made to be soft and incredibly wearable, and the logos and designs wouldn’t look out of place in a small boutique or popular chain store.
“When we set out to launch the line, we wanted our customer to love the clothing on its own,” Barzi says. “We have been able to accomplish that across the board.”
That wide appeal translates to high sales, which help Barzi accomplish his end goal: promoting positive father-child relationships, and helping fathers make the most of their own roles and circumstances.
One major avenue for this is Fodada’s own “Dad & Me” program, which creates spaces for dads and their kids to spend quality time together. Barzi will be taking this initiative up to Oregon this summer, where Fodada will facilitate a “Dad & Me” program inside of a prison.
“Incarcerated dads will get a chance to do our program with their kids,” Barzi says. “We are very excited about that.”
Fodada also supports programs for women, such as International Women’s Self Defense Day. On its website, the company explains that “every great dad has amazing women in his life,” and that modeling respect for women is an important duty for every father.
As Fodada continues to grow in both sales and influence, Barzi is looking forward to new ideas and programs.
“We have much to do, especially in ensuring that this progress is supported through the entire network of the personal and professional communities,” he says. “Fodada’s role continues to be in support of promoting this concept as a clothing line. We also need to continue to expand on programming we see aligned with this support, which we fund through the sale of the line.”
On top of all this, Barzi is also focused on spending as much time with his own kids as possible. When asked what his Father’s Day plans are, his answer is exhaustive.
“Donuts, soccer, basketball, drawing, wrestling, beach, chill, ice cream, legos, baseball, pool, cake,” he says, “[and] repeat.”