The charity's mission

To improve the health and wellbeing of children and communities in low income countries through the provision of safe water, good sanitation and other related public health measures where current provision is absent or inadequate.


How Water for Kids Began

Water for Kids was set up as a charity in 1996 after two Environmental Health Officers (EHOs) visited Peru as part of a scheme to help eradicate cholera. They were concerned that people in small and less formal settlements needed environmental health services in general and safe water in particular. They looked for a charity which was addressing these issues, but they could not find one. So they set up Water for Kids as a UK charity, rooted in environmental health.

The name 'Water for Kids' was chosen because it is a good description of what the charity does and if the kids have water, so do all the members of the community. The emphasis on kids also suggests an investment in the future.

Change of Charity Status

At the last AGM members agreed that the Charity should apply to the Charity Commission for a change of status to become a Foundation Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO). The purpose of this was to protect the charity and its trustees from unlimited financial liabilities and put it on a sound legal footing for the future.

Having gone through a lengthy application proces, the new status was confirmed by the Charity Commission on 24th April 2018. Although we have a new charity number (1178084) Water for Kids will continue to operate in the same way it has done over more than 20 years to deliver safe drinking water, good sanitation and other public health related measures.


Sara EmanuelSara Emanuel - Acting Chair and Trustee

Sara became involved in Water for Kids in 2005 and went on a trip to Zambia very soon after. Then she was hooked and became joint lead trustee for Zambia projects. Sara worked as an EHO for many years, mostly working to improve private sector housing in London. Now she is retired, there’s more time for Water for Kids and other pursuits.

Patrice PanellaPatrice Panella - Secretary and Trustee

Patrice has a background in IT and uses her skills to help support Water for Kids’ on-line presence. She has previously volunteered for a large charity in Namibia but prefers Water for Kids’ direct action, sustainable approach and particularly enjoys working with local partners in country. She has mainly been involved in projects in Zambia and been privileged to see first hand the huge difference safe water and sanitation makes to people’s lives. As secretary, she works on admin, policy, and communications for Water for Kids.

Greg Warwick - Vice Chairman and Trustee

Greg currently works at Mendip District Council. He met the founding Trustees of Water for Kids whilst working at Bedford District Council where he qualified as an EHO. Having travelled extensively in the developing world, he decided to use his Environmental Health skills to assist the charity in its work overseas and has travelled abroad with the charity to Zambia and Peru. As a long standing Trustee he has been the contact for projects in Peru, Rwanda and Kenya. He is currently working on a number of policies to assist in the future development of the Charity.

Jason Cox - Treasurer and Trustee

Jason's working background is within the commercial technology sector; he has some financial training which is very useful in his current role. When he was younger he lived in Zambia for five years and South Africa for two years and so is very aware of the hardships that the people face everyday when living in remote areas. Contact:

Tom Jackson - Trustee

I have lived in the North east all of my life and had a building company for 27 years. My first experience of Africa and development work came when I was 48 when I went to Tanzania to supervise the construction of hospitals and rural clinics on a family health project. I lived there for three years gaining a huge amount of experience working alongside local people and district officials. After returning I became involved with Kenya Acorn Project on rainwater harvesting and sanitation. This is how I started to work alongside Water for Kids. I have been involved since 2009. I regularly visit Uganda with Water for Kids and have been on a WfK trip Zambia. I am honoured to be part of and working with a great team of trustees.

Barbara LucasBarbara Lucas - Trustee

Barbara began her professional life as an EHO in a small regional authority and later worked for an inner London Borough. She then spent ten years as an independent consultant in both the statutory and voluntary sectors. Since 2002 she has worked in the private sector as a project manager, mainly on the English Housing Survey. 'I have seen the effectiveness of Water for Kids at first hand in Uganda and the close links with local communities, and welcomed the opportunity to become a trustee and support the charity'.

Elaine RudmanElaine Rudman - Trustee

Elaine has spent all of her working life in local government and currently manages a regulatory services department in the North East of England.

She was given the opportunity to volunteer in rural Kenya in 2018 with Water for Kids trustees and Environmental Health colleagues, delivering a jointly funded safe water and sanitation project. She loved every minute of the experience and it rekindled her interest in public health and sanitation which originally prompted her to join the environmental health profession.

Seeing first hand the challenges faced by communities without access to safe water, and how direct action and community involvement can make a significant difference to the health and wellbeing of children and families inspired her to support Water for Kids and she is honoured to have become a trustee.