Asian Achievers Awards 2024 - ‘British Asian community holds the power and influence to end leprosy for good’


Ayesha is 70 and lives in a leprosy community in Bihar. She is disabled by leprosy, and struggles to balance because she has no toes. The loss of feeling in Ayesha’s feet means she often gets cuts and infection. Her husband and in-laws threw her out when they found out she had the disease. The Leprosy Mission is walking with Ayesha through trauma, treatment and rehabilitation.

The Leprosy Mission is delighted to be named the chosen partner for the Asian Achievers Awards in 2024.

Celebrating Asian excellence across politics, business and civil society, the charity says the British Asian community holds the power and influence to help end leprosy for good.

Louise Timmins, Head of Asian Partnerships, says leprosy is a curable disease that shouldn't exist in the 21st Century. It is poverty, poor healthcare, and age-old stigma that means it continues to blight more than a million lives in India today.

Louise, who has worked for The Leprosy Mission since 2004, said: "It really is such a privilege to be part of the Asian Achievers Awards.

"I’m so looking forward to sharing the stories of people affected by leprosy in India, and explaining how we can be the generation to end this disease. I hope that my life’s work will inspire people to join me to support some of the most marginalised people on earth."

"Together we can halt the power of leprosy for the next generation. I don’t want to see any more children with preventable disability, or people rejected by their communities."

India is home to half of the world's leprosy cases and is where The Leprosy Mission's work began back in 1874. At the time, there was little that could be done for people with leprosy. There was no cure and people were exiled from their families and communities as soon as their bodies became disabled by the disease. For the early part of the charity's life-changing years, the work was limited to showing care and compassion to people who had been outcast.

The Leprosy Mission's work today is extensive and includes diagnosis, cure and rehabilitation, as well as providing water, sanitation, housing, education and sustainable livelihood opportunities. Pioneering research is also a core activity. However, caring for those who have been mistreated because of leprosy remains at the very heart of the Mission. There are still over 750 leprosy colonies in India.

The Leprosy Mission is excited that great strides can be made to stamp out prejudice surrounding leprosy in India through its partnership with the Asian Achievers Awards. Established in 2000 and held annually since then, the Awards take place on 20 September 2024.

Commercial Director, Liji George, said: "The Asian Achievers Awards is delighted to have The Leprosy Mission as its chosen charity partner for 2024. Since our inception, we’ve raised more than £5m for charitable causes and look forward to continuing this journey to support The Leprosy Mission’s important work in India.

"Through the Awards, we hope to share The Leprosy Mission’s transformative work in India with a wider audience to ensure support reaches those most in need.”

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Head of Asian Partnerships at The Leprosy Mission, Louise Timmins, spends time with widow Kamalamma, who is disabled by leprosy in Andhra Pradesh, India, last month.

For interview opportunities please contact:

Charlotte Walker

The Leprosy Mission England and Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man
Peterborough PE2 5GZ
Mob: 07940 721760