Redbridge mayor thanks charity for helping homeless during pandemic

Mayor of Redbridge Cllr Roy Emmett speaks with Seva volunteers

Mayor of Redbridge Cllr Roy Emmett speaks with Seva volunteers - Credit: Cllr Kam Rai

The Mayor of Redbridge last week visited the Sikh Empowerment Voluntary Association (Seva) to thank them for their work to support Redbridge’s homeless.

Continuing his tour to thank organisations who supported the borough during the pandemic, Cllr Roy Emmett presented the charity with a certificate labelling them one of the ‘borough’s champions’. 

Cllr Emmett said: “I think it’s important to thank those who give their time and energy for others. 

“It was a pleasure to join this wonderful group in prayer and I spoke to the people who were served and they told me how much it means to them that the Seva team care enough to help.” 

The mayor was joined by deputy leader of the council Cllr Kam Rai, speaking to staff and service users. 

The two councillors thanked the Seva team, who have been providing hot meals, clothing and winter rucksacks filled with essentials to homeless people in Redbridge since 2015. 

Cllr Rai said: “I’ve watched this local group support those less fortunate for the past six years and whatever the weather they turn up.

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"They are role models we should be proud of.” 

The group has continued to work through the pandemic by working in bubbles. 

The charity aims to reach out and provide support and aid to people suffering from hardship as a result of "local or national disaster or by reason of their social and economic circumstances".

They are inspired by the principle of Seva – common to both Hinduism and Sikhism – which stresses the importance of work or service performed without thought of reward or personal benefit. 

Taj Ghatoura, trustee of Seva, said: “We have such a passionate team of people who want to give back and support those who have very little and need our help.  

“Most weeks generous individuals and local businesses will sponsor our meals. Our work is built on the Sikh ethos of Seva, to selflessly serve and help others.” 

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