Aid worker killed in Pakistan wins Burns Humanitarian award

A Red Cross worker who was killed in Pakistan last year has posthumously won the Robert Burns Humanitarian Award.

Khalil Dale, who was from York but lived in Dumfries, first began working for the Red Cross in Kenya in 1981, and dedicated 30 years of his life to helping others.

On Saturday, Mr Dale's brother Ian collected the award on his behalf at the awards ceremony at the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum in Alloway.

Mr Dale said: "Khalil had a deep affinity with Scotland and, to him, Scotland was always his home so he would have been delighted to be named winner of the Robert Burns Humanitarian Award.

"Khalil very much saw himself as someone who just got on with his job wherever that happened to be and he would have been very humbled by this accolade, which is testament to the lives he changed and the legacy he leaves behind.

"Khalil was loved and respected by many people and I am extremely proud my brother, and the work he carried out over many years to make a difference for others, has been recognised in such a wonderful way.

"And I would like to thank the people of Scotland, especially those in Dumfries, for their support over the last 12 months. It has been truly overwhelming and means a lot to the family."

Mr Dale, 60, was abducted while working with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) health programme in Quetta, in Pakistan on January 5, 2012. He was found dead on April 29.

His family received a specially commissioned award and a cheque for 1759 guineas, a sum which signifies the year of Robert Burns' birth and the coinage then in circulation. The amount is equivalent to around £1800, which the family have donated to the Khalil Dale Memorial Fund.

David Anderson, chief executive of South Ayrshire Council and Chair of the RBHA Judging Panel, said: "It's clear from the accolades and tributes from those who knew him that he touched the lives of everyone he ever met.

"Khalil was a true humanitarian and his legacy lives on thanks to the Khalil Dale Memorial Fund which will be used to do exactly what he set out to do every day of his life, make the world a better place."

The Robert Burns Humanitarian Award recognises a group or individual who has saved, improved or enriched the lives of others, through personal self-sacrifice, selfless service or charitable work.

Video above features Ian Dale speaking to STV prior to the award ceremony.