The Committee

Meal-a-Day is run by a group of volunteers, meaning that we have very few overheads, so more of your money can go directly to the projects you help support. Here you can get to know more about the individuals who are on the committee, and the roles they play in running the charity.

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Gordon Dawes – Ware

Role: Chairman

Favourite Meal a Day moment: I’ve been fortunate to visit most of our projects in Kenya, Sierra Leone, and Cameroon over the years and I have lasting memories of so much good done, smiling faces and easier lives.

 

As Chairman, Gordon works tirelessly to head up Meal a Day, running it as an effective and responsible charity and supports its work across Africa and Europe. He liaises with CBM UK as well as key donors and sponsors. Gordon takes accountability for ensuring the charity maintains integrity and is run in a sustainable way.
 screen-shot-2016-10-15-at-15-39-26 Marian Dawes – Ware

Role: Trustee

Favourite Meal a Day moment: Visiting our projects really fills my heart with joy, especially seeing the smiles on the faces of children.

As well as taking on the full responsibility of being a Meal-a-Day trustee, Marian also supports Gordon with the day to day management of the charity, ensuring that the key details involved in running a charity the size of Meal a Day are in place, and work like clockwork.
 screen-shot-2016-10-15-at-15-42-14  Trevor Routledge – Knowle & Dorridge

Role: Compliance Director

Favourite Meal a Day moment: Seeing a project delivering it’s purpose not just on the day of completion but years into the future.

 Trevor helps Meal a Day maintain its focus and prevent the charity from drifting away from its key objectives. Far from ruling with an iron fist, his gentle approach as Compliance Director makes sure that Meal a Day is successful and the money given to us by donors is spent in the way it was intended.
 screen-shot-2016-10-15-at-15-38-03 Becky Brighouse

Role: Trustee and admin secretary

Favourite Meal a Day moment: Hearing about communities that used to walk miles to collect water from dirty rivers that now collect clean water from village pumps funded by Meal a Day.

Becky’s enthusiasm and experience is a real asset to the Meal a Day committee. She is responsible for safeguarding, runs all merchandising, including our beloved christmas cards, and is admin secretary. She also supports her husband Neil on Southern African projects.
 screen-shot-2016-10-15-at-15-45-32 Phil Lawrence – Nottingham

Role: Trustee and linkperson for Sierra Leone & Liberia

Favourite Meal a Day moment: Being beaten at draughts by a 10 year old member of the StreetKids project…there’s even photographic evidence of my humiliation!

Working with his wife Kate, Phil is responsible for liaising with the projects in Western African countries. He also has a vital strategic role in the charity – working across Project Boards, he helps to understand the wider needs and challenges faced by projects, and works with others to help improve the effectiveness of projects.
 Screen Shot 2017-02-24 at 14.48.39  Melanie Ford – Southampton

Role: Vice Chair, Project Director for DRC, Tanzania & Burundi

Favourite Meal a Day moment: When visiting projects in Kenya, I will always remember the smiles of all the kids at school as the were tucking into a midday meal!

As well as being responsible for project liaison across the DRC, Tanzania and Burundi, Melanie helps to advise the committee on any medical matters (as a doctor and professional GP her experience and knowledge is a huge help to the committee on such matters). She’s also responsible for ensuring all Project Directors are submitting regular and detailed feedback about their projects.
 Neil Feb 2013
Neil Brighouse – Manchester

Role: Project Director for Southern African projects

Favourite Meal a Day moment: When we took our own kids with us to visit some of the Southern African projects, it was an amazing experience to have as a family.

Not only does Neil liaise with the projects across Southern Africa, as a pharmacist, he helps to advise the committee on healthcare aspects of Meal a Day’s work. On top of this he is also responsible for compiling and producing the biannual Meal a Day Newsletter, so even more people can learn of the amazing work the charity does!
 screen-shot-2016-10-15-at-15-45-39 Kate Lawrence – Nottingham

Role: Trustee and linkperson for Sierra Leone & Liberia

Favourite Meal a Day moment: Arriving at the Talia Makai School with over 200 children in perfect uniform singing their hearts out, accompanied by a huge drum!

Sierra Leone and Liberia are some of the poorest countries in Africa, and coming face to face with poverty in some of the most deprived areas of the world takes real character & courage. Fortunately Kate has both in abundance and the personal relationships she has built, especially with the children, have helped Meal a Day to really change lives.
 DSC02561 Paul Lucas – Teignmouth

Role: Company secretary and Project Director for Kenya

Favourite Meal a Day moment: Every time I go to visit projects in Kenya I love seeing the smiling faces of the children!

Being the Company Secretary, Paul has an oversight of governance and running of the charity. He is responsible for liaising with all of all the projects funded by Meal a Day in Kenya – with three major long term projects in the country this is a significant responsibility and Paul’s frequent visits to the projects means he knows Kenya almost as well as the locals! Working with his wife Liz, they also prepare and provide all our official meeting minutes.
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Esther Hemmings

Role: Finance Director

Favourite Meal a Day moment: My visit to Sierra Leone. Everywhere we visited it was the same, from feeding the street on the streets of Freetown at night, to visiting the schools and seeing the life saving water pumps in action…those smiling faces, the joy and the thankfulness expressed, and the hunger to know about God and the love of Jesus.

Esther is responsible for the finances of Meal a Day. She distributes funds to allocated projects, and works closely with all Project Managers to ensure funds are sent to projects correctly and on time. She also works closely with our auditors to ensure that we maintain integrity in the finances of the charity.
  MARTYN  Martyn East – Nottingham

Role: Project Director for Cameroon

Favourite Meal a Day moment: Whilst in Cameroon with a brother, we found that a village water supply had gone into disrepair. We spent the day working on fixing the supply, and within a few hours, and less than £20 of materials, it was back up and running again.

As well as liaising with projects in Cameroon, Martyn is the most practical one on the committee. He loves to get his hands dirty – quite literally – and is the resident expert on agriculture and water supply. His knowledge of soils, crops, irrigation, farming and water is often put to the test when it comes to finding solutions in Africa, but his expertise is always dependable.
 DSC02558  Liz Lucas – Teignmouth

Role: Trustee

Favourite Meal a Day moment: Waking up at dawn in a Kenyan orphanage to hear the sound of distant singing. The singing gets louder as the children pass by the window, singing as they walk to morning assembly.

 With the amount of work that Paul Lucas has ensuring the effective liaison on projects in Kenya, it’s often a wonder how he manages without support. That is until you realise that his wife Liz is that support, and takes on a huge role in helping to run our projects in Kenya. Going above and beyond the call of duty, Liz also has the responsibility for looking after databases and taking official minutes at all Meal a Day meetings.
 image1 Luke Whitehorn – Maidenhead

Role: Marketing Director

Favourite Meal a Day moment: Seeing the joy on the face off a 14 year old girl at the Nalondo School for the Physically Disabled when she was given her first ever set of artificial limbs, having lost her legs in a car crash 2 years beforehand.

Luke’s work is focused on spreading the word of Meal a Day. He helps to share all of the wonderful work that the charity does through social media, e-newsletters, and online through the website. He is also the resident IT grunt, a role he secretly loves as a closet computer geek!