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Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Keighley man selling sweets and door knocking to raise money for local hospice

A haulage driver from Keighley is trying to raise over £1000 for charity.

A haulage driver from Keighley is trying to raise £1000 for charity.

Sajjad Sadiq, 44, is trying to raise money for Sue Ryder Manorlands Hospice by selling sweets and knocking on doors in the local community.

The initial plan was to only sell sweets, but a low uptake has meant that Mr Sadiq and his son Sohail, 12, have gone back to basics, knocking on doors to raise the much-needed funds.

Mr Sadiq said: “The plan was to start selling penny sweets in a box to raise as much as we can up until Christmas Eve. We have only had about four orders so far which is £30 or £40, so we have gone back to the old-fashioned way of raising funds, through door knocking.

Mr Sadiq with some of the volunteers at the soup kitchen before the pandemic.

“The last couple of days we haven’t managed to get out because of the weather, but we aim to do a couple of hours every night after my son comes home from school.

“It has been very successful so far, we have raised roughly £500, half of our initial target.”

Mr Sadiq fundraises for Sue Ryder Manorlands as it is a charity close to his heart.

Five years ago, Mr Sadiq’s older sister spent the last two weeks of her life at the hospice when she was dying of cancer. “As they did so much for our family, we try to give back to them. It is a fantastic local cause.

“You have Airedale Hospital and BRI, but the care patients get at Manorlands is one to one. It is not just for the actual patient but care for the whole family.

“One of the most frustrating things is that only a small percentage of the funding that the hospice receives comes from the Government, the rest is through donations, which I think is a bit unfair. A place like that does so much wonderful work for the local community, they should be given more support directly from the Government.

Mr Sadiq in Northern France in 2018.

Talking about the impact that Covid-19 had on the hospice, Mr Sadiq added: “With the coronavirus, restrictions, and lockdown, the establishment has struggled to raise funds to keep on providing the service that they are doing, which is why we are trying to raise as much money as possible.

“We have set a target of £1000 but are hoping to raise more.”

Mr Sadiq also said: “Going door knocking is simple but very effective. People have been absolutely amazing with donating their money.”

It is the wagon driver’s fourth time raising money for the hospice. Previously, Mr Sadiq has climbed Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in Scotland, twice and raised around £1000 for the charity each time.

The idea of selling sweets comes from Mr Sadiq’s older son, Mohsin, who raised a massive £1,200 for charity during Ramadan a few years ago.

Mr Sadiq also went to Slovakia in 2019 to deliver aid.

Mr Sadiq ran a soup kitchen that operated alongside the Hainworth Wood community centre, up until the pandemic hit in March 2020.

“He said: “We were running a soup kitchen the first Sunday of every month, providing breakfast or a hot meal to people in need. Due to the centre being closed because of the pandemic, we thought what can we do as a plan B? So, we started handing out food packs.

“The soup kitchen was a collective effort where family members and I cooked traditional Asian meals and through the support from the community centre, we had people visiting the premises for a get-together.

“Last summer we handed out around 1000 parcels. It was twice a week, on Tuesdays and Saturdays, but due to work commencing again, I had to give it up.

“This September, we picked it back up again, doing the exact same work but once a week this time.”

Mr Sadiq’s charity work started after helping migrants and refugees in France in the summer of 2016. In the past few years, Mr Sadiq has made several trips to the North of France and Greece to deliver vital clothing, shoes, and food provisions from Keighley to people in refugee camps.

Mr Sadiq has a Just Giving Page, which can be accessed here.

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