It is with the greatest sadness that we share with you the news that our wonderful co-founder and partner,
Chris Thomas, passed away suddenly on the evening of 20th October 2022.
We are devastated by this loss of a brilliant, kind man who devoted many years of his life freely helping people in need here at home and all over the world. As many of you know, he made frequent trips to Vietnam, Laos and India over the last 12 years to donate to, and create, projects there. Most recently he took time off his work to make several trips with his van full of aid to help Ukrainian refugees in Poland and also making the risky trips into Ukraine itself to deliver aid in April.
His kindness knew no bounds and even the Covid lockdowns didn't stop him : he helped many during the pandemic doing shopping and hospital trips for the elderly and the confined.
It was Chris and Connie's intention to return to India, Vietnam and Laos straight after Christmas 2022 to pick up the projects they had planned for AidforAll before the pandemic including a sewing room with sewing machines and fabrics for women, and self-defence classes at the poor school in Baruipur, Kolkata, India and helping the Big Brother Mouse organisation in Luang Prabang, Laos with their hugely successful school projects.
For now we can only reflect and remember with love the most wonderful man.
We intend to create a project in honour of Chris - you are welcome to donate to AidforAll in his memory and thank the many of you who have already donated for Chris.
Chris leaves behind his heartbroken love and AidforAll co-founder Connie Potter,
his girls Dilly and Kayleigh, his sister Jenny and nephew Xavi and niece Indy.
That best portion of a good man's life, his little nameless unremembered acts of kindness and of love.
AidforAll is a not-for-profit A ssociation with the following goals:
Support charitable entities or individuals who provide assistance to those in need
Improve children's education and provide help to very poor families around the world
Provide ad-hoc relief and aid to people in times of crisis or disaster
got to keep on going
It had been Chris and Connie’s intention and strong wish to return to SE Asia after Christmas 2022 for their regular one month travel around the projects they have supported through AidforAll since many years. They had not returned since the start of the pandemic when the borders closed and remained closed for a long time.
Connie decided to return and flew out on 28 December 2022 with filmmaker Charlotte, who had already accompanied Chris and Connie during one humanitarian trip to Poland at the start of the Ukraine war.
They were able to meet up with Kaushik De and his mum Lekha, founders of the school, and together made several trips to the Jhalak school outside of Kolkata.
The school has two new teachers, the wonderful young Susmita and Sujan who are devoted to the kids and are an inspiration. They have lots of ideas for the school.
The children don’t seem much worse for wear after the tough lockdowns. Sadly the same could not be said for the buildings. The rooves on 3 buildings, including the classroom for the youngest ones, are completely falling down.
The two computers in the computer building are just about hanging on. The tablets are out of action. We managed to bring in actual internet (as opposted to wifi on a dongle) to the computer room after we left. So now we need to sort out the computer room with up to date computers. The interest is there for after school classes as you can see.
Basic supplies were given out to all the kids, around 170 of them. Exercise books, pens, backpacks, water bottles plus the teachers had a long list of books required for teaching and the library. The kids even put on a wonderful dance show one day, what a beautiful sight that was.
Connie is in regular contact with the teachers on WhatsApp. Price estimates have come in for the basic repair works and new computers. We need money for these so if you’d like to contribute, please feel free to donate to AidforAll.
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Account Name: AidforAll Association
c/o C. Potter, 13 rue Joseph Pasquier, 1203 Geneva, Switzerland
Routing number: 084009519
Account number: 9600000000592154
Account type: Checking
Address: 19 W 24th Street, New York NY 10010, US