Nominate a DIY-ing dad that deserves a little love by using the hashtag #DadBuiltThis

By Hannah Chubb
June 16, 2020 05:48 PM
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Rob Kenney

Rob Kenny went viral as the "internet's dad" for helping out young adults with their DIYs. Now, he's giving back to fathers too! 

The 56-year-old created the popular YouTube channel “Dad, How Do I?” to share instructional videos for solving common household problems with kids who don't have a dad or father figure in their life to call up for help. 

Though he has a great relationship with his own two children — Kristine, 28, and Kyle, 25 — the Kent, Washington, native knows what it’s like not to have a dad to turn to growing up, and told PEOPLE that his own father's absence was part of what inspired him to start the channel. 

“My dad left me as a teenager, and after that, I determined I would never do that to my family,” he explained. “Now I am creating videos about things I wish I knew how to do when I was younger.” 

Rob Kenney

Now, he's teamed up with Lowes to find deserving dads across the country who have taken on DIY projects to help support their families in hands-on ways. He'll be surprising 10 deserving dads with a $5,000 Lowe’s gift card for Father's Day.

“Lowe’s has been so inspired by the incredible dads who have risen to the occasion over the past several weeks at home and surprised their loved ones with just how creative and resilient they can be when it comes to DIYing to help their families,” Lowe’s told PEOPLE. “Many dads have taken on impressive projects — from backyard rollercoasters to at-home Hibachi grills — to help their kids enjoy life at home a little more.”

In a YouTube video posted Monday morning, Kenney asked his followers to alert him to all the dads making a difference, suggesting families take to social media to post about what their dad has been building using the hashtag #DadBuiltThis and tagging @dadhowdoi and @loweshomeimprovement.

Throughout the week, the father-of-two will be hand-selecting the stories that stand out to him the most, giving 10 dads a gift card, so they can buy the tools they need to bolster their creativity. Lowe’s will also be surprising hundreds of other dads with $100 gift cards. 

According to a press release, the company will also be sharing “creative projects from some of the ‘daddest’ DIY dads across its social channels to showcase what can be built with a little know-how, a lot of love and the right tools.” 

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Kenney had the idea to create his YouTube channel a couple of years ago, but when the coronavirus hit and quarantine began, “I ran out of excuses,” Kenney said. Now, he has more than 2.27 million subscribers on YouTube alone.

Kenney with his wife
Rob Kenney

Since starting the channel, he has received messages from far and wide thanking him for his videos, including many from people who have lost or are no longer in touch with their fathers.

“The stories of pain and heartbreak can be overwhelming,” Kenney said. “But the stories of encouragement definitely bring me joy.”