Our History

“Kidney” was the original name of WellChild which was set up in 1977 by an individual whose friend’s daughter had died of kidney disease. Their aim was to fund research into kidney disease.

At that time there was virtually no research into children’s health issues and the specific treatment of children with kidney disease had only just begun. Years on, with the investment from Kidney/WellChild into kidney research, there have been major clinical advances such as haemodialysis, transplantation and management of chronic renal failure.

Over the years, “Kidney” evolved into “Children Nationwide Medical Research Foundation”, and moved towards supporting all areas of paediatric research, which was eventually renamed “WellChild” in 2003 to better reflect the broadening remit of our work.

Following a major strategic review in 2003, WellChild’s strategy was developed to offer more support to sick children. In addition to medical research WellChild identified a need for further care and practical support for sick children and their families. In response to this need new initiatives were created, including the WellChild Children’s Nurses posts and Helping Hands projects.

This brings us to where we are now and what our focus is for the future. Take a look at what we are striving to achieve for sick children across the UK and how you can help us achieve more for the families who deserve it most.

Find out more about our work