Carmel McConnell MBE, Founder and Chief Executive

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  Every child has the potential for a happy, healthy, loving life and many of their future life chances will result from their educational attainment. I want every child to achieve their full potential and feel very sure we can end child hunger as a barrier to education, in this rich and caring society.

Favourite breakfast: Poached egg on toast, grilled tomatoes. Big mug of tea.

Alex Cunningham, General Manager

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I am passionate about having equal chances and opportunities for all, and the fact that there are children in this country who are missing out on their education and hours of learning because they are hungry not only shocks but also makes me angry. Taking action and seeing the difference that we quickly make, simply by providing a breakfast is inspiring and certainly gets me out of bed every morning (even on the cold and grey ones). I also feel immensely privileged to spend my days with such an incredible and passionate team who are all so committed to tackling child hunger in the morning.

Favourite breakfast: I love porridge topped with banana or raisins (or for an extra special treat when on holiday - a nip of whisky too).


Rachael Anderson, School Partnership Manager

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  Supporting amazing school staff to improve the life chances of hundreds of children in such a simple way. I love that!

Favourite breakfast: Organic muesli mixed with organic cornflakes and coconut milk!

Jess de Ayala-Rutherford, Regional Lead, London & South East

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  For me my love for Magic Breakfast comes from the understanding that in every society, through every age, education has been the key to societal development and greater equality for all. If we can remove all the barriers to education for generations to come we optimise the conditions for the fairest possible society to evolve. Every child maintains the right to get the most out of their education.

Favourite breakfast: My favourite breakfast is Brazilian; acai berry sorbet with granola, cut up bananas and honey. Yum!

Selina Finch, School Partner, London & South East

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  Educators work incredibly hard to make school work for all children, but for many children a lack of a healthy breakfast is the first stumbling block which keeps them from learning. Magic Breakfast helps to remove this barrier.

Favourite breakfast: Porridge with a game of Uno.

Emily Frezza, School Partner, North West

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast? As a former teacher, I know how vital a healthy breakfast is for successful learning, well-being and growth. No child should be in a position where they do not have access to fulfilling food, particularly at the start of the day when they need it the most. I feel privileged that I am able to play my part in getting a delicious, nutritious breakfast to schools and, with amazing staff members, make an impact on children’s and families’ lives.

Favourite breakfast: Berries with natural yoghurt and honey and a big slice of buttered, wholegrain toast.

Sue Griggs, Regional Lead, North

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I love breakfast and don't function well without it! Working for Magic Breakfast means I am helping so many children to have the opportunity to eat a healthy breakfast, giving them the best start to their day.

Favourite breakfast: Porridge and blueberries.

Jan Jemson, School Partner, London & South East

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  Having worked in schools in socially deprived areas for many years I am very aware of the way hunger impacts on the well-being and education of children. Magic Breakfast is helping to keep children happy and healthy, I can't think of anything more important than that.

Favourite breakfast: Poached eggs on wholewheat bread.

Karen Jones, Regional Lead, Midlands & South West

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I love the fact that offering a simple, healthy breakfast can make such a difference to the health, happiness and potential future of so many children.

Favourite breakfast: Weetabix with semi-skimmed milk and a topping of nuts.

Helena Russell, School Partner, London & South East

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  Passionate about social and educational equality, I like the notion that my small input makes a big difference to children’s lives in the UK today and for the future. Just through something so straightforward as a breakfast! Hunger as a barrier to education should simply not exist in this country, in this age.

Favourite breakfast: Blueberry pancakes with Greek yogurt and a double shot latte. Preferably by Cottesloe beach in Western Australia.

Cate Wood, School Partner, South West

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I worked for many years as a teacher in some quite challenging schools and saw how hunger and poor nutrition could affect learning and behaviour.

Favourite breakfast: Bagel with banana and cinnamon, or muesli with extra fruit.


Selma Sylvester, Head of HR

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I believe that every child has the right to learn, a right to an education and the right to meet their full potential. No child should be too hungry to effectively start their school day and embrace being educated. And I am privileged to be part of organisation which effectively works towards this. I am proud to be part of Magic Breakfast.

Favourite breakfast: Baked beans on toast.

Fatima Khan, School Events & Logistics Coordinator

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I feel passionately about the cause of Magic Breakfast and knowing that I am contributing towards ensuring children do not go hungry, gives me great job satisfaction. I enjoy speaking to the schools and hearing from the school staff about what a difference a bagel and a glass of juice can make, it’s astounding.

Favourite breakfast: Beans on toast.

Maureen Healy, Evaluation and Measuring Manager

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I am a firm advocate of equal opportunities for all and find it extremely concerning that in this country there is a significant gap in educational attainment between children from advantaged and disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds. I also find it distressing to know that every day thousands of children arrive at school too hungry to learn. Through removing hunger as a barrier to learning, Magic Breakfast is helping to tackle these issues and improve the life chances of thousands of children across the UK - it’s great to be a part of this work.

Favourite breakfast: Poached eggs on wholemeal toast with avocado, and also fresh fruit. 

Harriet Green, Nutrition Manager

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  The work we do makes a difference to a child's future - giving them access to better health, better education and essentially a better life outcome.

Favourite breakfast: Whole-wheat bagel with avocado and smoked mackerel.

Nigel Lowe, Senior Finance Advisor

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast? I couldn’t really believe that we have hundreds and thousands of children in the UK arriving at school hungry and at a disadvantage in their learning. What Magic Breakfast is doing is brilliant in not only ensuring as many kids as possible are getting fed before they start to learn but also in raising awareness of the issue nationwide and with Government. I am delighted to help in any way I can to help Magic Breakfast get to many more children as quickly as possible.

Favourite breakfast: Any combination of fruit, cereal, and yoghurt ………or all three together!

Harriet Moesli, Charity Administrator

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  My previous job was working in a school in which many children started the day hungry and struggling to concentrate. This motivated me to join Magic Breakfast as here I have the opportunity to actively make a difference and try to solve this problem.

Favourite breakfast: I always start my day with a salmon and cream cheese bagel.

Haddi Browne, Research and Data Officer

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I think it’s unfair that so many children cannot reach their full potential and are less likely to succeed in school just because they may not be able to access a healthy breakfast. It’s amazing that something as simple as having breakfast before the school day begins means that children are able to concentrate and learn.

Favourite breakfast: A bagel with eggs - at the weekend when I have time to make it! Wholemeal toast with cheese, jam or chicken slices during the week.

Ximena Del Castillo, Secretary to the Board

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast? I love working in the voluntary sector and being part of a team that strives to make the world a better place. I can’t believe that in a country as rich as the UK children are still too hungry to learn in school. I am very grateful for the opportunity to be part of a team that is working so hard to end this absurdity.

Favourite breakfast: My husband’s special oat and coconut pancakes topped with berries and maple syrup… my children and I often wrestle for the last one! 

Sabiha Fazel, Data and Nutrition Executive (on maternity leave from November 2016)

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  For me, seeing the happiness on children’s faces and feeling the positivity during breakfast club makes the work I do feel very worthwhile and rewarding. Having lived my entire childhood in Kenya, I witnessed first-hand the impact of hunger on a child’s well-being.  Magic Breakfast plays an incredible role in ensuring every child has the right breakfast to start the day and I’m excited to be a part of that.

Favourite breakfast: Mmm.. I have so many favourites but if I had to pick one it would be wholemeal pancakes with blueberries and maple syrup (just a little bit!).


Wendy Gupta, Senior Corporate Fundraising Manager

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I am passionate about pursuing equality particularly for the younger generation. At the same time I believe our society thrives on entrepreneurialism and innovation. Magic Breakfast has the perfect mix. Also we have a dam good time and eat nice food!

Favourite breakfast: Bacon and avocado in a brioche bun with spicy tomato sauce.

Tom Halliley, Corporate Account Manager

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I am extremely passionate about the work of Magic Breakfast to ensure that no child is too hungry to learn and I believe that the socioeconomic environment children are born into should never determine their ability for educational achievement. Magic Breakfast is doing a fantastic job to tackle this issue and I am proud to work for this amazing charity. 

Favourite breakfast: Full English.

Natalia Ribbe-Szrok, Fundraiser (Hospitality & Restaurants)

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  Teaching the next generation about the most important meal of the day, where food comes from and what the wonderful world of hospitality brings to people near and far.

Favourite breakfast: My favourite healthy breakfast would have to be porridge with banana, raspberries and a bit of cinnamon.

Vicky Karoulia, Fundraising Manager

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  Supporting children to overcome the barriers they didn't create to succeed in life.

Favourite breakfast: Poached egg on toast with avocado (extras like bacon, cheese etc. are optional but always welcome!)

Vicky Hotchkiss, Fundraising Officer

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  I’m really passionate about youth empowerment, access to education, and food security and so the ‘Magic Breakfast Vision’ that no child should ever be too hungry to learn really strikes a chord for me. It’s a pleasure to be a part of making this vision a reality.

Favourite breakfast: I’m addicted to green breakfast smoothies! The simple act of taking time out in the morning to make them helps to wake me up, and then I get a yummy, healthy treat!

Sophia Dettmer, Senior Communications Manager

What motivates you to work for Magic Breakfast?  Visiting a Magic Breakfast club is an instant tonic as the children are fabulous and it is very apparent how important the club is to their school day. Listening to testimonials from head teachers is extraordinary. Learning from them how a child’s life can be turned around because they are no longer hungry in the morning makes me want to tell as many people as possible what a huge impact a simple, healthy, breakfast can have.

Favourite breakfast: Porridge topped with fresh strawberries and blueberries.