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Young Citizen: Iqra, 13, makes 50 sandwiches a week to feed homeless

PUBLISHED: 15:05 18 July 2018 | UPDATED: 15:05 18 July 2018

Iqra Shahzad, 13, makes 50 sandwiches a week for the borough's rough sleepers. Photo: Zainab Shahzad

Iqra Shahzad, 13, makes 50 sandwiches a week for the borough's rough sleepers. Photo: Zainab Shahzad

Archant

A 13-year-old who makes more than 50 sandwiches a week for the borough’s rough sleepers is this week’s nominee for our Young Citizen Award.

Iqra Shahzad, 13, makes 50 sandwiches a week for the borough's rough sleepers. Photo: Zainab Shahzad Iqra Shahzad, 13, makes 50 sandwiches a week for the borough's rough sleepers. Photo: Zainab Shahzad

Iqra Shahzad, of Levett Gardens, Goodmayes, has been volunteering twice a week with Serving Humanity – a group which distribute food to dozens of rough sleepers in Ilford, Stratford and Barking – for the past year and a half.

She said: “When I help the homeless, I feel good knowing that I made someone happy.

“And I hope that I can raise more awareness and make people know that there is something we can try to do to help those less fortunate.”

On Thursday evenings, Iqra sets up the chairs and tables for more than 30 homeless guests at Al Madina Mosque, in Ilford Lane.

She greets them at the door and serves them plates of food.

And each Saturday she makes 50 sandwiches – filled with lettuce, cucumber and tomato – which the group distributes outside Ilford Police Station, in High Road, and outside the Stratford Centre, later on in the evening.

Iqra, a Year 8 pupil at Mayfield School, said that her favourite school subject is science and she hopes to either become a prosecutor or judge in court when she is older. “I just find law really interesting,” she said.

Talking about her plans to continue volunteering with Serving Humanity, Iqra added: “I hope that I can do more than this.”

She has been nominated for the Young Citizen Award by the group’s co-founder Ash Khan.

He said: “She does this as she wants to give something back to the community and wants to learn to appreciate everyday blessings she has.”

The Recorder/Redbridge Rotary Club Young Citizen Award is about celebrating the amazing young people in our borough.

It is run by the Recorder in conjunction with Redbridge Rotary Club, and sponsored by The Exchange shopping centre, Ilford, which provides each monthly winner with a £30 gift card. The Young Citizen of the Year will be crowned at the Mayor’s Community Awards.

You can nominate any person from Redbridge, as long as they are under 25, by emailing aaron.walawalkar@archant.co.uk.

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