JWA was started by Dr Beryl Beynon in 1982 and became a charity in 1984.
Dr Beynon was a GP in Beverley. She was moved by the struggles of the Polish people who at that time were in the Eastern Bloc and were unable to get some medical supplies including colostomy.
She started sending medical and colostomy aid to Poland. Gradually the work expanded into Eastern Europe and JWA was able to build a rehabilitation centre and housing for the handicapped children in Romania who were abandoned to state care during the Ceauşescu regime.
Beryl’s vision expanded as the supply of aid grew and the charity has worked in Afghanistan, Western Africa, Pakistan, Moldova, Syria, Somaliland and Kenya as well as sending aid during humanitarian crises and disasters to many parts of the world.
As well as sending medical aid, JWA now sends educational and agricultural aid to help support schools and communities abroad, particularly in Western Africa. This includes planting fruit tree orchards and sending tractors to be used for seed bank projects and feeding schools.
Where does the name Jacob’s Well come from?
‘Jacob’s Well’ comes from a story in the bible, in John’s gospel chapter 4. Jesus meets and helps a lady from a different culture whom no-one wanted anything to do with. The place where he helped her was called ‘Jacob’s Well’.