About Us

Steve Rieck, founder of DADA

Steve Rieck, founder of DADA

DADA is a grassroots nonprofit organization and registered charity, formed in 2009 by a father who wanted to do his part to combat climate change  while protecting the health and safety of children and communities in Canada

The DADA campaign raises awareness that unnecessary vehicle idling, mainly when parked, is totally preventable and is one of the greatest forms of wasteful and harmful pollutants individuals face. We, the parents, will be the biggest danger to the health of infants and our children, especially if we fill their fragile and developing lungs with harmful particulates and noxious fumes.

We build awareness by educating individuals, students, businesses and municipalities through varied forms of materials, outreach, media exposure and distributing handouts to the public. By leveraging relationships with other like-minded individuals, we network and collaborate with other groups, form coalitions ad encourage advocacy of health and safety issues and propose best practices and policies as well as bylaw enforcement initiatives with Municipalities, school boards and businesses. DADA also advocates for effective vehicle idling laws, policies and rules.

DADA was granted incorporation as a nonprofit and is a registered charity in Canada (Charitable Number 847623055RR0001) which will assist in our raising funds to duplicate our work in other regions in Canada.

DADA encourages green/ECO driving practices through educational materials and instruction.

What is DADA?

We are in innovative social cause of socially minded and environmentally conscious individuals and like-minded organizations, led by parents and teachers who are concerned about the health and safety of their children, the air they breathe, climate change and the impact we as individuals have on the environment.What have we done?
In the past, we have donated materials to schools and community groups to help them promote the message to the public to be IDLE-FREE and help stop unnecessary air pollution from vehicles that are parked and left running for lengthy periods of time.


DADA fills a need where schools have long struggled with finding ways to get schoolbus drivers and parents to turn off their engines on school property and ideally get more children to walk to school rather than being driven by their parents. The traffic congestion, and safety issues around schools have increased as well as studies showing the harmful level of air pollutants around schools.

Since schools lack the resources and marketing skills needed to promote the message to be IDLE-FREE, DADA offers materials including banners, signs, handout materials and pledge cards in a IDLE-FREE campaign in a box, which allows schools to immediately start a multipronged campaign to build awareness and commitment from drivers to reduce air pollution near schools as well as in their driveways at home.Who are DADA volunteers?

We are caring teachers, parents and students who are pitching in to protect the health and safety of our children, the environment, local air quality, and to help create caring neighborhoods and communities where people show common courtesy to one another.We are typically parents who have children with asthma or other respiratory illnesses who are affected by airborne pollutants.

We are teachers and school administrators who are finding it difficult to get school buses and parents to turn off their engines while parked near school property.

We are local environmental groups and school eco-clubs that are wanting to run a program that will protect our environment and fight climate change.

We are concerned citizens and commuters who see excessive idling in our communities and want local municipalities to get their buses and fleets to be IDLE-FREE to save taxpayers money while enforcing bylaws to protect citizens from environmental bullying.

What are our beliefs?

We believe that there is power in organized numbers and that we should help one another to build momentum and awareness on a worthy cause. In this day and age, with climate change and environmental issues becoming more prevalent, it is clear that we all need to do our part to reduce our impact on the environment.

We believe that if people are made aware of what comes out of their tailpipe and how it affects our most precious citizens, our children, that they will consider making positive changes to the way they drive and operate their vehicles.

We believe that people are generally good and want to do the right thing and do not intentionally want to harm their neighbors, their children or be rude to bystanders. Most people idle their vehicles out of bad habits, myths and misinformation, and psychologically, a worthy reason to change such as the environment, climate change, their money and their children.

Our History

We are a grassroots charity, made up of caring citizens who, in organized numbers, can affect positive change in our communities that started off as a Burlington father’s way of giving back to his community while doing his part to take responsibility for what we have done to our planet that our children will inherit, and try to make things right.

To fight climate change while protecting our children, there was a need for a parent-led group that would build awareness and engage other parents to a worthy cause that we needed to take responsibility and stop our wasteful habits for the sake of our kids! The cause aimed to fight climate change, improve local air quality and protect the health of children who were being forced to endure asthma attacks,  nausea and headaches brought on by breathing exhaust fumes from schools buses and cars.

After after seeing excessive unnecessary idling at schools with rows of parents and school buses idling for sometimes 20 minutes each day, at schools, bus terminals and at public parking lots throughout the city, it was clear that this was a growing problem that was seen as unnecessary air pollution that was affecting bystanders and children.

The role model parents analogy

Parents try to be role models and set an example to their kids while teaching them habits not to waste energy and be considerate of others. Yet we are wasteful ourselves by idling excessively in our driveways and showing other wasteful habits.

Does this sound like you?

“Don’t waste your food.” …then we should not waste our resources as well.
(When you leave the room), “Turn off the lights!” “Don’t leave the water running so long!” “Pick up after yourself, your room is a mess!” ….then we should turn off our engines when parked and not leave it running when not in use too.
Don’t be rude! Show good manners! …then we should show common courtesy to others as well and not force vehicular flatulence on others.