Trust for Africa's Orphans

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TAO keeps operations in the UK to a minimum, allowing the great majority of our funding to go directly to running our projects. Our Coordinator and part-time Project and Finance Officer are supported by a hands-on Board of Trustees / Directors.

Chairman of TAO

Chairman, Iain Knapman, visits a project in Uganda.

UK Coordinator & Company Secretary: Joy Mugisha

Appointed Company Secretary: November 1997

Joy established UWESO UK Trust in May 1993 to help raise funds in the UK for the Uganda Women’s Effort to Save Orphans (UWESO). She recruited expert Trustee / Directors and inspired major donors to back the projects being undertaken by UWESO. UWESO UK Trust became TAO in 2001 so as to be able to work with a wider range of partners.

Throughout its history Joy has run TAO and brought in all the funding needed to run our projects. She visits our projects several times a year, providing crucial oversight of our partners’ work in Uganda. Joy supports the UK Board, enabling members to play both their decision-making and hands-on roles.


Chairman: Iain Knapman

Appointed: September 2006

Iain has 36 years’ experience in banking, including senior roles with Barclays’ Bank in six African countries. He worked in Uganda for several years and continues to have close personal connections, visiting Uganda often. Iain was the Chairman of the UWESO UK Trust Programme Liaison Committee in Uganda from 2003 until he returned to the UK in 2007, when he became Chairman. Iain brings his extensive management experience to his role as Chairman and through his wealth of banking and finance expertise he provides key support to TAO’s financial management.

Hugh Bagnall-Oakeley

Appointed: March 2015

Hugh brings to TAO’s Board extensive project management experience and strong expertise in farmer institutional development, soil fertility and natural resource management, project and strategy planning, and project monitoring and evaluation. Hugh is Senior Hunger Policy and Research Adviser at Save the Children UK and has worked for DfID, EU, World Bank, FAO, African Development Bank and private enterprise. He has over 25 years’ experience in rural development and agribusiness, and has worked in Uganda, among other African and Asia-Pacific countries.

Sarah Bretz

Appointed: February 2017

Sarah is TAO’s legal advisor. A qualified solicitor, she has 15 years’ experience in the legal profession in both private practice and in-house, in the UK and abroad. Sarah also supports TAO through her strong organisational and project management skills.

Peter Burnham

Appointed: March 2012

Peter is the Managing Director of an innovative marketing company, responsible for operations in the UK and South Africa, bringing leadership and management skills to his role on TAO’s Board. He is also an enthusiastic fundraiser for TAO, cycling many miles and organising football events to raise donations for us.

Treasurer: Steve Peckham

Appointed: February 2016

Steve qualified as an accountant with KPMG in 1984 and worked in a number of its offices. He then joined EMI Records, heading up its internal audit function then acting as Finance Director in South Africa. On returning to UK in 1999 he became Group Finance Director of Virgin Megastores Group, culminating in leading the management buy out of the UK Megastores business from Virgin Group in 2007. He brings strong accounting, team leadership, problem-solving and many other skills to his role at TAO.

Robyn Cox

Appointed: December 2011

Robyn brings over 25 years’ experience in marketing to her support for all of TAO’s communications, including its website and Annual Report. She has worked in Africa for 5 years, including as Fundraising & Communications Advisor for DITSHWANELO – The Botswana Centre for Human Rights. She has also held programme management and management consultancy roles and brings these skills to her input to TAO’s project management and institutional funding applications.

Malcolm Evans

Appointed: August 2016

Malcolm has 20 years’ experience in agriculture management and training, predominantly in Uganda and Zambia. In addition, he has 27 years’ experience helping business start-ups, including piloting a micro-finance scheme that was replicated across Scotland and developing training programmes for young people building businesses. He brings his agricultural and micro-finance expertise and extensive leadership experience to support TAO’s agri-business work and wider project management.

David Perkin

Appointed: July 2002

David has worked in overseas development projects for 25 years and contributes his wealth of experience to the design and oversight of TAO’s agricultural projects. Working mainly under the UK overseas aid programmes, David’s experience includes five years in Uganda, five in Malawi, eight in Peru, and shorter periods in the Solomon Islands, Venezuela, Brazil and Argentina. David also holds other voluntary roles with his local church and as Trustee of his local community transport association.