It’s a surreal, scary and strange time, with mass gatherings barred, people across the country being forced to stay at home, with strict measures like social distancing and self-isolation in effect the world is on its knees enduring the Covid-19 pandemic.
As the stream of news filters in we try to navigate between fake news (yes, there’s lots of it out there) and the equally terrifying real news as we tentatively listen out for the figures, with abated breath, on the casualties of covid-19.
Therefore, it’s more important than ever to try and bring in some news that’s heartening and smothered with positivity.
Thank goodness there is bucket loads of it and we don’t want to waste any more time in telling you about the selfless acts of kindness that is proving humanity is triumphing over adversity and how the power of care-mongering will help get us through this global pandemic.
Let’s start with the food and hospitality industry. Despite having to close business and suffer thousands of pounds of losses, it hasn’t stopped restaurants and food businesses such as My Lahore, International Restaurant, Aziz Catering and Howdy from donating and distributing food to frontline NHS staff and those most vulnerable.
Salon owner Prity Farooq, is also at the forefront when it comes to giving. While her award-winning salon is closed, she chose to put her time to good use and cook a huge pot of biryani and bake lots of cake which was distributed to police officers working long shifts during these lockdown measures.
Food isn’t the only form of support that is being dished out. Thanks to award winning vehicle customisation company, Enkahnz the distribution of support to the most vulnerable can keep moving thanks to their new drive. Their aim is to help with logistics to ensure support reaches the most vulnerable and in need. Philanthropist and founder of Enkahnz, Naveed Khan upon lockdown announcement, put his team to work immediately where they transformed a Barugzai Range Rover into a Covid-19 response vehicle, which has been busy as soon as it went on the road delivering and supporting those most in need.
Mr Khan said: “The response has been huge. We’ve been inundated with calls and messages of help. I am so glad we can help.”
Faith organisations have also been lending their support, with the Bradford Hindu Council, sending in palettes of supplies to Bradford Food Bank and Salahadin mosque on Little Horton Lane sending in donations for Bradford NHS and Yorkshire Ambulance Service. A brand new initiative called the Volunteering Interfaith Programme (VIP) was also launched specifically, which sees faith leaders from Muslim, Sikh, Hindu and Christian come together to help the vulnerable with food delivery, shopping, well-being support and friendly phone calls, aiming to support local people as well as relieve some of the pressure on the NHS. The initiative is run by Strengthening Faith Institutions (SFI) in conjunction with Age UK.
Javed Bashir, facilitator of the programme, said: “Every day we are getting bad news about the increasing number of people affected by the coronavirus, this programme highlights the goodness of human nature as different faith communities are coming together to help the Age UK to support the most vulnerable in the district – elderly. That’s what this programme is really about”.
The continued efforts of charities and community organisations such as Bradford Community Kitchen, Bradford Foundation Trust, The Curry Circle have also stepped up to proactively offer support, source donations and food items to deliver to the vulnerable and elderly.
Inspirational Shadim Hussain of My Foster Family came up with an initiative to help the approximately 1000 refugee and asylum seeking families in Bradford who don’t have internet access, with devices and internet access, so that they can home school their children and significantly improve their life chances well beyond Covid. Shadim and his team have been working closely with schools to identify families most in need.
Volunteer led Bradford 4 Better Group have also been extremely proactive in not only helping the vulnerable but have been leading a huge campaign to support our little furry friends. They’ve been leading on a campaign to get pet food for abandoned pets and have been successful in gaining support from many pet food suppliers.
Politicians seem to be playing their part too, with MP Philip Davies donating thousands to a local mental health charity. The Shipley MP, who is often in the firing line for his controversial views has been praised for his kind donation of £2000, from a winning auction bid for ITV’s racing commentator Stewart Machin’s colour chart, which he donated to The Cellar Trust.
These are just a handful of communities, charities and individuals who have been brought to Asian Sunday’s attention, we are sure there are many more who are truly showing how the power of kindness during a global pandemic can help us win the battle against covid-19.
Asian Standard is Britain's leading FREE weekly newspaper focusing on Britain's South Asian community. We aim to platform the UK's South Asian community with a view to reaching out to the wider community.
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