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2024 TELL Legend Awards

2024 TELL Legend Awards

Last year, as part of our 50th anniversary celebrations, TELL launched the TELL Legends Award. This award recognises individuals present and past who have shown excellence in their work, inspired others, and demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the organisation’s vision of zero suicides.

Over our 51 years of service, thousands of volunteer Lifeline Crisis Support Workers have given time and care to cover TELL’s phone or chat services and support those in need. With each call or chat, they must prepare themselves to support the user no matter their situation or challenges, assessing their safety and building trust along the way. 

This year, we would like to recognize and honor the following individuals with our 2nd annual TELL Legends Award for their years of service and dedication to crisis helpline work: Ian-de Stains, Kathy Burton Lewis, Charles Bentley, and Jason Chare. We will feature one of our 2024 Legends in our monthly newsletter each month. 

This month, we honor Ian de Stains OBE (1948 – 2017). Ian was a former TELL Board member, Executive Director, crisis support worker, and Lifeline supervisor. Ian moved to Tokyo in 1975 when he was seconded by the BBC to NHK. He was Executive Director of the British Chamber of Commerce in Japan until his retirement in March 2011, before becoming the TELL Executive Director in 2013 – 2015.  Ian served as a TELL Lifeline crisis support worker on and off from 1988 – 2014. Ian also worked on our HIV line and walked in our first Tokyo Pride March in 2013. 

He was also a member of the TELL Board of Directors in the late 1990s and again from 2012 to 2014. Ian also helped plan and perform in various fundraising events for TELL, including the Christmas Cracker and Midsummer Night Revels at the British Ambassador’s residence. In 2014, Ian performed the one-man show for TELL, Chip in the Sugar. Ian was an individual who went above and beyond his work to create a better, more compassionate community for everyone. He is a TELL legend.