Remembering Alan Dean

By IofC UK Communications

IofC UK Communications

It is with great sadness, that we announce the passing of Alan Dean, one of the founding members of the Sustainable Communities network and an invaluable member of the team.

He will be remembered for his vision to empower young people through his own organisation, Burning2Learn, and as a passionate advocate for the Sustainable Development Goals. Alan dedicated his life to supporting young people by building their confidence and encouraging them to develop life skills. He was a familiar figure in Sevenoaks, Kent, and has mentored many young people throughout his career in education.

Amina Khalid, Head of Sustainable Communities, said: ’I still can’t believe that he is no longer with us. Words may not suffice to express the heartfelt sorrow that I feel for the passing of my dear friend and colleague. It’s been a real joy to grow in friendship with him for the last nine years through the work of the Sustainable Communities Programme. He was indeed one of the key founders.

During community visits and national outreach, we laughed, we shared inspiration and we took steps together with teams across the country. I hold on to the sentiment that ”What we have once enjoyed, we can never lose. All that we love deeply becomes part of us,“ as stated by Helen Keller.

Alan was a man with a vision to change the lives of young people for the better through education, and by being a light in moments of darkness and despair. His humour had both the ability to give people belly laughter, but also to truly get people to reflect on what part they can play in changing the world for the better.

He was a friend, a mentor, and an inspiration to so many of us. He is gone from our sight, but never from our hearts. And as Gandhi once said ”there are no goodbyes for us. Wherever you are, you will always be in my heart”. In Islam, we say “to him we belong and to him we shall return.”

May he rest in peace – he will forever be missed. However, the fire he lit will continue to be the beacon of light for many years to come.’

An obituary of Alan Dean has been published in The Guardian.

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