AVI News

Sad News

Alan Leather

Dear Friends and Supporters,

We are very, very sad to be sharing with you that our great friend and a supporter of Action Village India and many community organisations and movements across India and the world has died. Alan was our cherished Chair of trustees from 2016-2018 and an AVI trustee since 2008.

Alan was at the heart of our joint Partners Forum in Hazaribag, Jharkhand just 12 months ago. For him it was a return to Jharkhand and Bihar where nearly fifty years ago he had begun his lifelong commitment to working for more just, equal and fulfilling lives for all.

Alan’s warm smile and sparkle in his eyes were an expression of his inspiring, positive, humanity that filled his way of being with and amongst people. This twinned with his lifelong dedication to enabling social and economic justice has led to him touching, changing and even transforming the lives of hundreds of thousands of people in India and across the world.

We will all feel the continuing friendship, warmth and inspiration from Alan in our lives and common work for a more just, equal and inclusive world. Thank you Alan.


On behalf of Action Village India, we have shared our empathy, sympathy and solidarity with Alan's family. We have also shared the sad news with partners in India. We will be bringing together messages, reflections and photos we receive and sharing them with Alan's family in due course. If you would like to include any messages please do email us. If you would like to make a donation to AVI in memory of Alan we will also pass this information to his children.

Alan's family are planning a memorial service on Saturday 15th June in London. If you would like to email your RSVP to Action Village India we’ll pass it on (this will help the family with the planning of the event).

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Sympathy and Condolence Messages

"Thanks so much for passing on the sad news, its quite a shock, Jennie and I are with Satish/Girija and family and have told them. NBJK will organise a condolences meeting the day after tomorrow and planting a mango tree behind the office. Alan was one of the most important people to me in my first stay in India."

Ivan Nutbrown - AVI Founder - Advisor


"It always impressed me how warm and generous spirited he was.  I have the utmost respect for him.  Love and best wishes."

Paul Bragman - AVI Trustee


"I am so shocked and saddened by this news and finding it hard to process and find the right words right now. Caroline is just round the corner so I’ll drop a card round and see if she’s in tomorrow. None of you need me to say what an amazing and special man Alan was. It has been such an honour, privilege and joy to spend time in his company over the last few years. We will be lesser without him. With love, Anna"

Anna Griffiths - AVI Executive Director


"Dear Friends

That is so sad. Alan put so much into his work with AVI in these last years and it obviously meant a lot to him. I remember him at the 2015 forum and how much he enjoyed the visits we made and meeting people in the villages we went to. And of course he had a lifetime of experience working in development.

He was a lovely person and we will all miss him.


Mary Holmes - AVI Trustee


"This is very shocking news.  It seems no time at all since we were all in Jharkhand and Alan was playing a full part in the forum.  It is always difficult to believe that something like this has really happened.   I will remember his sense of commitment, his modesty and self-deprecating sense of humour.


David Smith - AVI Treasurer


"It is shocking to hear that Alan is no more. He is such an inspiring and humorous personality to miss him in AVI events in future.

I had only a few occasions to have associated with him when he always impressed me as a great mentor in voluntary work. I remember to have met him first time in AVI's previous PF at Assefa.

Today being the Women's day I vividly remember how he stole the show of our Women's day programme in 2015 and how appreciative he was when he recalled the event in the session I had with him in November 2016 in AVI agm.

His speeches and presentations in AVI PF in 2018 were all interesting and informative  and I still remember his true stories of his association with Ivan during his early days in Gaya. 

I feel heavy at heart to hear this.


Jothiramalingam S.R. - Crusade


"This is really sad to hear about the news of Alan Leather. I had few opportunities to work with him closely  during the PF , which reminds me of a very humble, smiley and witty personality. His life for working for the well being of most disadvantaged and excluded people is a lesson to learn.

We all at Srijan Foundation pray for the peace of soul and may god give strength to the family to bear such a great loss. Please pass our condolences to the family.  

Sincerely – Rajiv"

Rajiv Sinha - Srijan Foundation


"ASSEFA's first contact with Alan Leather was thirty five years ago, where he came to evaluate one of ASSEFA Projects. We, at ASSEFA, still follow some of his suggestions which are helpful.  

We are sorry to hear that he is no more with us. Our heart felt condolence to his family members and his friends.

We pray Almighty to give his family members and his friends strength to overcome this difficult situation.

May his soul rest in peace.

L. Kumar"

L. Kumar - Assefa


"Our deepest condolences on the very saddening demise of Alan leather. Our prayers and strength to all his loved ones

With best regards, Kailash"

Kailash Chandra Dash  - RCDC


"Very sorry to learn of this great loss to all of AVI and to the vulnerable people of the world.  Thank you for giving us such a full picture of Alan's life and work.  I believe I met him only once.

In friendship."

Stuart Morton - AVI Supporter


"I am glad you have written in some detail  of Alan's life. I liked and respected him alot but had no idea of the extent of his commitments to the common people throughout his life. ...he wore them lightly.

I am very sad to hear of his death, and will make a donation to avi to honour him. Best wishes Sabrina"

Sabrina Aaronovitch - AVI Supporter