2023 marks the 10 years of Dad Club London, and is coming with a big change.....
Pictured: Mark Burke and Jeremy McCall in July 2013
December 29, 2022
Founded in 2013; with the purpose of creating opportunities for dads to bond and support one another while experiencing everything London has to offer along with their children; Dad Club London has created a new standard for what it means to be a father figure and community member in Southwestern Ontario.
Jeremy McCall and Mark Burke came together to begin a club for dads, with the mission of creating networks and positive change for those who participated. Mark left the province shortly after co-founding the idea of Dad Club London in 2013, and Jeremy continued to grow and evolve and bring in others to assist in creating tremendous social and personal good in the areas of parenting, fatherhood, partnership, fundraising, education, community building, and citizenship.
Since 2013, Dad Club London has welcomed over 1,600 members who have attended 494 events, for a total of 1,097 hours of programming, which has seen the participation of 7,044 adults and 3,873 children.
In the last ten years, Dad Club London has made 128 donations to organisations and individuals in need across the area, for a total of $178,690.06 shared in the areas of health, fitness, children, poverty, new immigrants, and preventing violence against women.
The number of volunteer hours given and material goods shared with individuals in need is incalculable, but its effects are spread across the region. This includes hundreds of repurposed computers and video game systems, mountains of clothing, and van loads of gifts and school supplies shared with those in need. Sharing your abundance and paying it forward have become synonymous with fatherhood for Dad Club London members.
Most notably, all of these accomplishments have been reached without a single paid employee or influx of even a penny of taxpayer dollars. It's always been #DCL4TheKids , and done with private solicited donations and volunteer efforts.
Dad Club London President and Co-Founder Jeremy McCall has announced today that as of the January 4 2023 Annual General Meeting to end the 2022 fiscal year, he will be resigning the position of President and turning it over to Vice-President Chris Burton.
"the last ten years have far exceeded my wildest dreams when it comes to the possibilities created when you bring people together, work hard, and care about what you're doing. I first founded and began to lead this organisation as an expecting first-time father, and I've never not been in charge of a large, vibrant, 24/7 movement like Dad Club London. Because of the legacy we have created and the outcomes we have produced, people reach out around the clock through social media, email, phone, and text, looking for and expecting help. Over the past year, I've worked full time, ran Dad Club London, been President and then Vice President of my kids' Home and School Association, been the Vice Chair of the London Public Library Board of Directors, and also spent five months fundraising, managing, and running my own campaign as a candidate for City Councillor in the 2022 Municipal Election. My wife and children have faithfully stood by my side and supported me every step of the way in my attempts to make the world and our community a better place, and it's only fair to them to take a step back in 2023 and focus on being more present for my family. As a very wise fellow father once told me, "you only get 18 summers with them", and my oldest is already more than halfway through that. New leadership, fresh ideas, and a change in perspective are never a bad thing and our organisation will be in good hands with an experienced and successful leader and dad like Chris at the helm. I'm grateful for every single person who played any role in making the last ten years possible. Thank you for your support and kindness. "
Chris Burton, as the current Vice President who is transitioning into the President role, brings a decorated background as a local father, grandfather, military veteran, and entrepreneur.
Chris has a wealth of leadership experience in the financial sector, managing upwards of 125 employees in past positions, and currently serves as owner and President of Burton Financial Group. A former Second Lieutenant in the Canadian Armed Forces, Chris also has led and taught others at any opportunity as a reservist, pipe band member, and public speaker.
In regards to this move, Chris shared:
"“I have been a member of the Board of Directors for several years, joining shortly after becoming a part of Dad Club in 2017. Since that time, I have been involved in many events and fundraising activities individually and with my family. I am proud of all the accomplishments of the club and the leadership of Jeremy. He has been an inspiration to myself and our members. I look forward to assuming the role of President of Dad Club London and feel fortunate to have Jeremy on the board at my side to assist me in this transition. I am excited to represent our membership and help continue to foster the growth of Dad Club London in our community."
When not volunteering, leading, teaching, or coaching; Chris and his wife Natalie are raising seven children and five grandchildren in Southwest London.
Outgoing President Jeremy McCall will be transitioning into a brand new, previously never required role of "Past President' on the Board of Directors, and will advise Dad Club London as they continue to pursue their mission of creating Better dads, a stronger community, and a brighter future for our children in their eleventh year of operation.