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Chigwell teen who wants to 'make the world a better place' receives British Citizen Award

PUBLISHED: 10:00 24 October 2018

From left to right: Ashley Banjo from Diversity, Hannah Chowdhry and Liz Moorse CEO of charity ACT.

From left to right: Ashley Banjo from Diversity, Hannah Chowdhry and Liz Moorse CEO of charity ACT.

Beattie Communications Group contact Alison Pendlington on 07928 668565

A 14-year-old community campaigner has been honoured with a British Citizen Award at a ceremony hosted by Diversity star Ashley Banjo.

Hannah Chowdhury with the other award winners.Hannah Chowdhury with the other award winners.

Hannah Chowdhry - who attends Kantor King Solomon school - received the award alongside other inspirational children and young people from across the UK at the ceremony at the Palace of Westminster last Thursday (October 18).

The awards are run in association with Specsavers, and their purpose is to recognise young people who are making a valuable contribution to their community, society or a chosen cause.

Hannah, from Chigwell, launched her first local campaign at the age of seven, which led to a £50,000 mammoth skull replica being given a home at Redbridge Museum.

More recently she has helped raise funds and gain permission for a nativity scene to be reinstated on the steps of the town hall in Ilford.

Hannah Chowdhury with the other award winners.Hannah Chowdhury with the other award winners.

She has also helped local police tackle the use of drugs and legal highs, working with the East Ilford Betterment Partnership, and is an experienced campaigner and public speaker for the British Pakistani Christian Association.

In her work for them, she has spoken to over 1,000 people at Westminster Cathedral about the treatment of Christians in Pakistan - and was invited to an EU conference on minority persecution in the country.

Earlier this month, Hannah defied expectations again by completing her Bronze Duke of Edinburgh award in half the usual time and was nominated for our Young Citizen award.

Hannah has achieved all of this despite suffering from juvenile arthritis.

Wilson Chowdhry, Hannah’s father, said: “We are incredibly proud of Hannah. She is a really community-spirited person, and is intent on improving where she lives and goes to school for the benefit of everyone.

“She has always had a tremendous sense of community responsibility, and really wants to make the world a better place.

Saleem Ismael, store director at Specsavers Ilford, said: “Hannah is a really inspirational young lady, who has achieved an amazing amount at a really young age. None of us in store can wait to see what she does next.”

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