Rev Celia Apeagyei-Collins
Celia is the founder of the Rehoboth Foundation, an organisation offering leadership development and consultancy for the fulfilment of both individual and corporate vision. She also runs a mentoring network for leaders passionate about community transformation.
Celia believes every person has a unique gifting and is capable of bringing about change for kingdom advancement.
A regular speaker at events worldwide, Celia has also served as a pastor and the principal of a Bible college. She is a Council member for Churches in Communities International and has been listed as one of the influential Black Christian women in the UK serving the church.
Guvna B is a double MOBO Award winning rapper, author and broadcaster. He is widely considered an influential and important voice within British rap music because of his inspiring, uplifting lyrics and views on youth culture.
His 2020 album everywhere + nowhere amassed over 30 million streams, while his 2021 book Unspoken: Toxic Masculinity and How I Faced the Man Within the Man, became an Amazon bestseller.
Guvna B has presented many radio and TV documentaries including the BBC’s Gospel Meets Hip-Hop, and appears regularly on Sky Sports News’ Good Morning Transfers and The Zoe Ball Breakfast Show on BBC Radio 2.
Guvna B is a fan of West Ham, and lives in London with his wife and two children.
He says: ‘I support Tearfund because they don't just want to be heroes and fix things, they want to make sure things aren't broken in the first place. We live in a world filled with not only broken things, but broken people and something needs to be done. Tearfund has a heart for the disadvantaged and so do I. I'm especially excited to encourage young people to make lifestyle choices that will create a better environment for the future.’
Peter Chambers is a former Olympic rower for Great Britain who won Olympic Silver in the lightweight Mens' 4s at the London Olympics 2012. He competed in Rio 2016, and now trains the next generation of rowers.
In 2013, Peter and his brother Richard travelled to Uganda with Tearfund and also climbed 45 metres to the top of the Victoria Square Dome, while carrying 20 litres of water, to launch a clean water project.
Peter lives with his wife, Wiz, and daughter in Henley upon Thames.
Rev John and Anne Coles
John and Anne are known for their leadership of New Wine, the popular Christian summer gatherings, from 2000-2014. John also oversaw the development of the New Wine network of churches. New Wine now hosts numerous events resourcing both church leaders and church members. Anne’s particular passion is for developing women from all backgrounds in faith and leadership.
‘Tearfund and New Wine both passionately believe that the local church is the means of bringing God’s renewal, joy, hope and peace to individuals and communities,’ says John. ‘We want churches in our network to learn from Tearfund’s extensive experience and understanding of ministry amongst the poor, international aid and development, and advocacy.’
The couple led St Barnabas Church, Finchley, for 22 years, seeing it develop from a small quiet group, into a vibrant multi-national church committed to mission and church planting. They now help lead a missional congregation meeting in a home, and enjoy mentoring and encouraging others engaged in similar pioneering missional work.
John and Anne have four adult married children and six young grandchildren.
Martha Collison rose to fame in the 2014 season of the BBC's The Great British Bake Off. As the youngest ever contestant at just 17 years old she made it all the way to the quarter finals, while also studying for her AS Levels. Martha now cooks each week on the Virgin Radio Graham Norton Show and is a columnist for Waitrose Weekend. She has written two recipe books titled Twist and Crave, and also blogs at bakingmartha.co.uk.
Martha has visited Tearfund partners and projects in Thailand, Cambodia and Lebanon. In Lebanon she saw work that Tearfund and its partners are doing to support Syrian refugees.
Martha says: ‘God has given me a voice, wanted to use it for good. I love how Tearfund work through the local church who have been working in communities long before Tearfund arrive, and will be there long after Tearfund have left. Working to empower communities and give them support to find their own solutions, to me, is worth championing’.
Liz Earle MBE is a British writer, TV presenter and award-winning entrepreneur. She has written over 36 books on beauty, nutrition and wellbeing and is regularly seen on ITV’s This Morning. She is the founder of Liz Earle Wellbeing, a bi-monthly magazine, and Liz Earle Fair and Fine, a Fairtrade jewellery brand. She also co-founded Liz Earle Beauty in 1995.
Liz is passionate about natural health and wellbeing, the environment and sustainability and attributes the Christian value of “love your neighbour” to inspiring her own charity and campaign work.
In October 2018, Liz travelled to Ethiopia with Tearfund to see the impact of self-help groups in rural communities. Liz met women who have been empowered to lift themselves out of poverty, through collective saving schemes and training in business and income-generating skills.
Liz says: 'I’m delighted to support the valuable work of Tearfund and its local teams, having seen first-hand what an extraordinary difference they make to real people’s lives. I’ve been so inspired with the comprehensive way people are given the skills and resources to lift themselves out of extreme poverty – empowered to build sustainable businesses that bring positive, life-changing benefits to entire communities.'
Pete is a best-selling author, pastor and one of the founding champions of the 24-7 Prayer movement. He leads Emmaus Rd, a church in Guildford, having previously served for seven years on the senior leadership team at Holy Trinity Brompton and Alpha International in London. Pete's publications include How to Hear God, How to Pray, Red Moon Rising, God on Mute, The Prayer Course and Dirty Glory. Pete is married to Sammy and they have two sons.
According to Pete, ‘The greatest NGO on earth today is undoubtedly the church of Jesus Christ. By working through partnerships Tearfund harnesses the power of up to 2 billion Christians to change the world in quiet, rooted, measurable ways. As a pastor, I appreciate the way Tearfund values the heroic vocation of local churches.
‘As a prayer leader, I appreciate the intelligent spirituality that underpins Tearfund’s social engagement. And as someone with a passion for justice, I am grateful to Tearfund for enabling me to be part of something bigger than my own postcode. Together we can care for the poorest people on earth, fight injustice, heal communities and even rebuild nations.’
Tamsin Greig is an award-winning actor of stage and screen, as well as being a long-time supporter of Tearfund. Tamsin is well known for her roles in TV series such as Episodes, Friday Night Dinner, Black Books, and Green Wing. She starred as Jean Whittaker in James Graham’s play, Labour of Love, and played Malvolia in Twelfth Night at the National Theatre to critical acclaim. Tamsin has several BAFTA nominations, has received a Royal Television Award for Best Comedy Performance and an Olivier award for her portrayal of Beatrice in the RSC's production of Much Ado About Nothing.
Tamsin has visited Tearfund partners and projects in Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, India and Lebanon.
Tamsin says: 'I support Tearfund because I have seen for myself how communities can transform themselves, as they are supported and encouraged by a worldwide network of partners. I love the way Tearfund partners with local churches and communities to help them change their worlds, as they reach out to the most marginalised and vulnerable people.'
Actor David Gyasi has played roles in critically acclaimed productions across stage, television and film.
In 2005, David played the part of Francois in the BAFTA nominated feature Shooting Dogs, based on the experiences of BBC news producer, David Belton, who worked in Rwanda during the Rwandan Genocide.
David has since taken to the stage, notably in the National Theatre's multi-award winning production of War Horse, and has appeared in films including The Dark Knight Rises, Cloud Atlas and Interstellar. David was the lead in the US TV series Containment, has featured in TV dramas such as Dr Who and recently starred as Agreus in Amazon’s Carnival Row and Achilles in Troy: Fall of a City.
David says: 'I love that Tearfund’s work is more than just a sticking plaster, it’s about working alongside people with the goal of enabling them to have the confidence to make decisions that will shape their lives. It is a vision of unlocking potential, ensuring a future that’s better than the past.'
Lord Dr Michael Hastings
Lord Dr Michael Hastings of Scarisbrick CBE is Chair of the SOAS Board of Trustees and an Independent Peer in the House of Lords. He is the former Global Head of Citizenship for KPMG International and former Chancellor of Regent’s University London.
Michael was the BBC's Head of Public Affairs and first Head of Corporate Social Responsibility. He is a Trustee of the Vodafone Group Foundation and was a non-executive Director of British Telecom (on the Board for Responsible and Sustainable Business) for nine years.
In 2005, Michael was awarded the honour of an independent peerage to the House of Lords by Her Majesty The Queen. In 2010 he was a leading advisor to the Chatham House enquiry into the Future Role of the UK in Foreign Affairs.
Michael sits on the Council of the Overseas Development Institute in the UK and the Centre for Global Development in the USA. Michael is also President of ZANE – a development aid agency working in Zimbabwe.
Tom is a fifth generation baker and co-founded of The Long Table which aims to make locally sourced and lovingly prepared food available to everyone, regardless of their social or financial background.
One half of Channel 4’s Fabulous Baker Brothers, Tom has won Young Baker of the Year among numerous awards. A teacher, author, presenter and speaker, Tom is married to Anna and they have four children. Tom has visited Tearfund projects in Laos, Brazil and witnessed the work of Tearfund partners in Kenya.
Tom says: 'Baking is in my genes and there was never any doubt as to what I would do for a living, but for the children I met in Laos there is very little choice. Through their partners Tearfund is shining the light and the love of Jesus in a very dark place. In truly wretched and horrific situations, their currency is hope.'
Rev Siew-Huat Ong
Rev Siew-Huat Ong was the Senior Pastor of a network of Chinese churches in London, CCiL (Chinese Church in London), until 2015, when he retired after 32 years of service. He is on the EAUK (Evangelical Alliance UK) Council and on the Board of COCM (Chinese Overseas Christian Mission). He has served as a local school governor and was the director of an international mission organisation based in Hong Kong.
Rev Ong is passionate about global and integral mission and discipleship in the local church, mentoring younger leaders and equipping the next generation. He is married to Grace and has a daughter, Rachael.
Ruan Pienaar is a professional rugby player and currently plays for the Free State Cheetahs. Ruan represented Ulster in the Pro 12 league from 2010 to 2017, playing 100 club games and scoring 659 points. He has won 88 caps for South Africa, is a World Cup Winner (2007), and played three tests against the British and Irish Lions in 2009.
Ruan has been supporting Tearfund for a number of years and has taken part in many fundraising events, including a 90km Cycle for Freedom which he completed with former teammates Craig Gilroy and Rob Herring.
After beginning his working life with Tearfund, Marvin worked in the US with Sojourners with Reverend Dr Tony Campolo. He is a Yale World Fellow and graduate of Operation Black Vote, a former BBC journalist, public health worker and voluntary sector manager.
As Mayor of Bristol, Marvin has led city-wide campaigns on child hunger and is leading the city’s response to both the climate and ecological emergencies. He is passionate about uniting mayors and other leaders to bring about the decarbonisation of cities across the world.
Daniel is a middle-distance runner who represented Great Britain in the 800 metres at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021. He won gold at the 2020 British Athletic Championships and took part in the 2022 World Championships in Oregon.
He is married to Lara and is currently completing a degree in Mechanical Engineering at Imperial College London.
Daniel is set to compete at the World Championships in Budapest in 2023 and the Paris Olympics in 2024.
Rt Rev Ric Thorpe
Ric began his ministry in 1996 as a curate at Holy Trinity Brompton. In 2005, Ric and his wife Louie, led a church plant to revitalise St Paul’s Shadwell. Over the course of 10 years St Paul’s planted four other Anglican churches and congregations in East London. Ric has had a wider role as the Bishop of London’s Advisor for Church Planting and as a tutor in Church Planting at St Mellitus College.
Ric says: ‘I have experienced first-hand the impact of Tearfund's work in East Africa where individuals and communities have been transformed by their work with and through local churches and partners. As a church leader and as a Christian wanting to make a difference, Tearfund has enabled me to play a simple part in something much more profound that has a lasting legacy on families, communities and churches. As a result, I have found it is changing me too. I am honoured to do what I can to promote this work.’
Ric is married to Louie and they have three children.
Rt Hon Sir Stephen Timms
Having entered Parliament in 1994, the Rt Hon Sir Stephen Timms is currently the Member of Parliament for East Ham. He is also the Labour Party's Faith Envoy. He was the Shadow Minister for Employment from 2010 until September 2015 and currently chairs the Work and Pensions Select Committee.
Sir Stephen was formerly Financial Secretary to the Treasury with strategic oversight of taxation as a whole, Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs and European and international tax issues. Sir Stephen is also a member of the Ramblers Association and the former Chair of Christians on the Left. He lives in the East London Borough of Newham, and is married to Hui-Leng.
Sir Stephen travelled to Bangladesh with Tearfund in 2014 and Tanzania in 2018.
Will Torrent is one of the UK’s top chocolate experts with an award-winning patisserie background. He has worked with some of the UK’s most well known chefs, as well as appearing on TV shows including Sunday Brunch, The Apprentice, Blue Peter and Songs of Praise. He works as a Patisserie and Chocolate consultant for Waitrose and is the author of three best-selling books. Will is married to Francesca, has a daughter and lives in South Buckinghamshire.
Will travelled to visit Tearfund projects in Ethiopia in 2016, and in 2018 he visited the Ivory Coast to see how Tearfund's church and community mobilisation work is supporting cocoa farmers and buyers.
Laura is an environmental activist who is passionate about climate justice issues. Based in Glasgow, Laura is an ethical influencer under the name @LessWasteLaura on social media.
Laura is an environmental scientist by degree, but has combined her passion for the outdoors, academic background and faith to pursue justice through everyday lifestyle changes and activism. Laura's social media platforms continue to grow, creating a community of activists. She is in demand as an expert voice in the media in conversations about climate, waste, sustainable fashion, and environmental justice issues.
Laura says: 'Tearfund has been an integral part of my own journey learning about justice and poverty, and God's call for us to be a part of his restoration plan. As a young person I took part in many of Tearfund’s events, before becoming a volunteer, then staff member, and now I am honoured to be an Ambassador for the amazing work of Tearfund.
‘This organisation empowers partners around the world to build up communities, mend brokenness, and seek justice, all through the church, challenging systems of oppression and speaking out on the most important issues of our time. I am particularly inspired by the work done globally by Tearfund and partners as they seek to bring awareness to environmental and climate justice issues.'