Who Let The Dads Out?

Turning the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers

Intentional ministry to fathers and father figures

There are around 50,000 churches in the UK, and 52% of children under four access some form of parent and toddler group via these churches. These groups are mainly aimed at and attract mothers.

By contrast relatively few churches identify the need to intentionally reach out to fathers, father figures and their children.

We're working to change this.

We want to see churches creating spaces where fathers, father figures and their children can deepen their relationships and explore faith together. We're working to challenge, inspire and support the more than 200 churches already running Who Let The Dads Out? groups and we're also encouraging other churches to develop an intentional ministry to fathers and their children.

Where it all began

Who Let The Dads Out? began at Hoole Baptist Church, Chester, in March 2003, when 20 dads turned up to the first session with their children. By March 2012 it had grown into a national movement resourced by BRF, and is now part of our work to support churches for outreach in the community.

The number of Who Let The Dads Out? groups is growing steadily - there are now over 260 Who Let The Dads Out? groups on the directory with an estimated 8,500 father, father-figures and children together attending a group each month. The majority of those who come have little or no other contact with their local church.


Who Let The Dads Out? at Rainbow Pre-School, New Zealand

How you can get involved


The work of Mark Chester and Tony Sharp, supporting existing groups and highlighting the importance of outreach to fathers, is entirely funded by donations from individuals, churches and charitable trusts.

Can you or your church support this work with a one-off or regular donation? Thank you.

Donate to Who Let The Dads Out?

Find out how we're funded


The only way for our vision to be realised is for more Christians in churches to do something specifically for fathers and their children.

Please pray for us as we make the most of the opportunities we have. Please pray for local groups reaching out to fathers and for individual relationships between churches, fathers and their children.

Find out more

You'll find more information about Who Let The Dads Out?, including case studies from churches running groups, on the Who Let The Dads Out? website.

You can also sign up to receive the Who Let The Dads Out? newsletter by email.

Visit the Who Let The Dads Out? website

The difference we're making

All Who Let The Dads Out? groups share the same values: to demonstrate God’s love by providing a safe space for dads, father figures and their children to enjoy time together regardless of whether or not they go to church.

These groups act as a catalyst to establish and develop friendships with the fathers, along with opportunities to explore the Christian faith together.

As a result of Who Let The Dads Out?:

  • Families are strengthened - as fathers engage in parenting their children and consequently connect better with their partners as they parent together.
  • Communities are invigorated - as men develop a stronger network of local friends, helping in the process of binding their community together.
  • Christian faith is passed from one generation to the next - as the church encourages fathers to explore faith issues and challenges them to teach their own values and beliefs to their children.

Who Let The Dads Out? also provides a number of ideas and resources to 'journey' with dads and their children in the context of family support, ministry and mission.

Who Let The Dads Out? at L19 in Liverpool

I started attending Who Let The Dads Out? almost two years ago. I really enjoy these sessions as I get to spend quality time with my son, who loves it; I'm able to relax and meet other dads; and mum gets a break.

As the months went on I realised how important these sessions were to me and to other dads. I met and chatted with several leaders from the Who Let The Dads Out? team who were very friendly, welcoming and happy.

Although I guessed they were involved in the wider church, they never pushed this, which I thought was a good thing. I was aware of the Ministry of Men events and went to a couple of breakfasts with very interesting speakers. I think this, coupled with my conversations with the leaders, made me intrigued to want to explore more about what motivated these guys and why they did what they did...

Mark, a member of Who Let The Dads Out? at St Stephen's, Tonbridge

Read Mark's story on the Who Let The Dads Out? website

Image acknowledgements

A rough old week © Craig Sunter licensed under CC 2.0 / inverted and cropped; Image from Who Let The Dads Out? at Rainbow Pre-school, Dunedin, New Zealand;