Our Story

After traveling to the developing world as part of a medical team, Dr. Ted Mettetal returned with a heavy heart for people who were suffering because they lacked access to clean water. In February 2010, he founded HSW, a 501(c)(3) to bring hope to the developing world through clean water, improved sanitation, and public health and hygiene education.

The earliest HSW projects originated in Nicaragua in villages along the Coco River. HSW then spread to Belize where a major initiative was launched to reclaim 150 abandoned (contaminated and rusted) wells.

Because Africa has one of the highest percentages of deaths related to water-borne diseases than any continent in the world, HSW answered cries for clean water in 2011 by placing wells in Bunyagira, Uganda, and the Tollee district of Ethiopia. HSW also partnered with other organizations to fund wells in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a rainwater catchment and storage system in Rwanda, and a water treatment project in Sierra Leone to help ward off an impending cholera epidemic, which impacted over 12,000 people.

Since 2013, HSW has maintained two W.A.S.H (water, sanitation, hygiene) zones in Ethiopia and Belize. Within these zones, HSW partners with local governments and NGOs to provide year-round logistical and operational support to ensure the sustainability of water projects. Volunteer teams, along with an HSW project coordinator, travel to these zones an average of six times during the dry season months of October-June. During these trips, the teams drill borehole wells, reclaim existing wells, build latrines, and teach hygiene through a school-based WASH program, which includes a deworming and vaccination program. In 2016, HSW expanded these school-based programs to address the growing concern of menstrual hygiene management (MHM), a major contributor to absenteeism among girls in secondary schools.

To date, HSW has brought its mission of clean water, improved sanitation and public health and hygiene education to 12 countries and 28 rural villages, for a total of 83 completed water projects, bringing clean water and sanitation to more than 100,000 people.


Our mission

At Hope Springs Water our mission is threefold. To bring hope to the world through Clean Water, Reliable Sanitation, and Hygiene Education. 

Our Accountability

We report yearly to the online non-profit accountability firm Guidstar and have achieved their gold level distinction for our commitment to fiscal accountability. 

Our Staff


C. Ted Mettetal, M.D

Founder and Executive Director

Dr. Mettetal is an Arkansas native, born and raised in Monticello. He graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello, and from the University of Arkansas School of Medicine in Little Rock, Arkansas. From 1975 to 1979, Dr. Mettetal served in the U.S. Navy as Medical Officer. He later did his residency in Family Practice medicine at John Peter Smith Hospital, Ft. Worth, TX. In 1982, he opened his own practice in Family Medicine in Athens, TX, where he remains today. In addition to his practice and his work with Hope Springs Water, Dr. Mettetal still finds time to go overseas regularly, serving as a member of a medical mission team.

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Steve Akin

Trustee, Past Chairman

Every organization needs a Steve Akin. When Dr. Mettetal began his vision of founding Hope Springs Water, the person he went to was his friend and Missions Pastor at his church, Steve Akin. Together, they fleshed out what has become a team of dedicated individuals bringing clean water to others around the world.

Mr. Akin received his Master of Church Music in 1976 from the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and served in churches across Texas before settling at First Baptist Church Athens in 2001, where he remains today. In 2010, he brought his talent of never meeting a stranger to HSW, garnering the support the young organization required. Together with Dr. Mettetal and Mr. Hinds, he has traveled to nearly every region Hope Springs Water serves. 

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Bliss Nelson

Director of Administration

Bliss holds a B.A. in Recreation and Leisure Studies with an emphasis in Marketing from The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor and an M.B.A with a focus on non-profit management and social impact from Bethel University. After graduating, she worked as a Marketing Associate for Camp Victory Ministries in Minnesota and as the Director of Finance and Human Resources at Peaceable Kingdom Retreat for Children in Killeen, Texas. 

Bliss first joined the Hope Springs Water family as a volunteer during the months leading up to GolfWELL 2015. It was then that she came to share our passion for eliminating water poverty in the developing world, and was moved by the many ways Hope Springs Water has shown Athens to be  a community that makes a difference globally. 

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Colleen Nelson

Health Education Coordinator

Colleen came on staff in June of 2018 making her the newest member of our team. Moving all the way from Minnesota, she is enjoying our lovely warm weather here in Athens, TX. With a back ground in camping ministry and a B.S. in Health Education she fits right in with Hope Springs Water.

Along with her passion for helping others she loves spending as much time outside as she can. Whether that be rock climbing, canoeing, backpacking, riding her horse or hiking with her dog Jackson she is always up for a new adventure!


Contact Us

If you would like to know more about how you can partner to bring clean to water to the world we would love to hear from you. Please fill out the form below and we will be in touch.

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Hope Springs Headquarters

P.O Box 1567
Athens, TX 75751

P: 903.292.1781