It’s finally here, the launch of DadsHouse and Researching Reform’s nationwide tour ‘In Dad’s Shoes’, is today and we are naturally very excited about that, but what is it exactly we are doing and why are we doing it?

Who is DadsHouse?

DadsHouse is an organisation that was set up by William McGranaghan to help single dads get the kind of support they wanted, rather than having to access the bland and usually ineffective support that’s traditionally been on offer.

Billy is a single dad himself and it was his experience that led him to set up DadsHouse. At DadsHouse you won’t find any sour-looking assistants, straight-faced counsellors, brown clipboards or piles of forms that need filling out. With a strong focus on child welfare and an organic attitude to offering single dads support, what you get at DadsHouse is different – a warm welcome and help, on your terms.

From football nights to free cookery classes for dads and their kids and life coaches if you need them, DadsHouse taps into a special brand of support you won’t find anywhere else. So, what’s Billy’s ultimate goal for single dads? To make DadsHouse available on every high street in the land, so that Dads who want advice or even a bed for the night, can pop in to DadsHouse and make DadsHouse their home.

Ok, but what’s In Dad’s Shoes?

Well, it’s a tour! At Researching Reform we know that to this day, despite the astounding brilliance of the internet and all it offers, the best way of spreading a message is still on foot, so together with DadsHouse we are physically taking the tour all over the country in the form of an exhibition. The exhibition will feature photographs of single dads all over the country, with their kids and as we zoom up and down the land, we will grow our exhibitions and hold them in all sorts of places, from Parliaments to pastry shops.

But we decided from the outset that whilst we wanted to invite people to support DadsHouse through the tour, we also wanted to give something back and we felt the best way to do that was to look to the future. The exhibition then, will focus on finding emerging talent amongst our young photographers across Britain and give them an opportunity to get involved by snapping single fathers and their kids and to show their work to a wider audience. Once the tour is complete, we will publish their single dads portfolio inside the In Dad’s Shoes book we’re making.

We have called the Tour ‘In Dad’s Shoes’ because we wanted to highlight the intimate bond between loving dads and their kids. And as a child ourselves, we remember wearing our dad’s shoes, on more than one occasion and we imagined you may have too….

What happens next?

Today is a very special day for DadsHouse and Researching Reform, as we prepare to launch the tour in the House of Lords. Our first photographer for the tour is Natalie Naccache, an emerging talent herself, currently listed as such with Getty Images and who has taken the very beautiful and emotive photos we will be showcasing in the House of Lords this evening. Her photos will be viewed by peers, MPs, government department heads and established figures in the world of photography.

A special thanks to Natalie, for providing such lovely photos and we are sure she will go on to do very well in her chosen field of photojournalism.

But that’s not all. After our launch this evening, we’re not going to get to rest on our laurels, oh no! We have exhibitions lined up right across the country, from the Welsh and Scottish Parliaments, to boutique tea shops in Scotland, hotels in London and much more! And as we go from space to space with our single dads, we will take you with us, every step of the way. From the events themselves to our online updates, we’d like to share it all with you.

But what about mums?

It would be easy to think we’ve forgotten mums, but nothing could be further from the truth. Please be patient with us, Mums of the land, we think you are just as important as dads and what you do is invaluable.

Photograph courtesy of Natalie Naccache