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Finland honours 1.2 million Dads on Sunday

Three men have been honoured as Fathers of the Year for their work in raising their own children and as well as supporting others in their communities.

Janne Nordman, here with his youngest daughter Elsa, is one of three Fathers of the Year. Image: Tommi Parkkinen / Yle

Flags are out around Finland on Sunday to mark Father's Day. The day has been celebrated in Finland since the 1970s, becoming an official flag day in the '80s.

Earlier this week, Minister of Social Affairs and Health Pirkko Mattila handed out "Father of the Year" awards to three men: Janne Nordman, a father of seven from Lappeenranta as well as Antero Lindeberg of Lahti and Miika Niemelä of Kerava, who have both been in supporting children's and youth sports while raising their own kids.

More than half of Finnish men are Dads

According to Statistics Finland, there are some 1.2 million fathers in the country. More than half of all males aged 15 to 81 have children. More than eight out of 10 men over age 64 are fathers.

The Father's Day tradition appears to have begun in the US about a century ago. It is celebrated in North America, the UK and Ireland and many other countries in June, but similar holiday are observed elsewhere in other months.

Estonia and all the Nordic countries except Denmark honour Dads on the second Sunday in November.