Young Citizen: Bahishte, 15, volunteers to teach respect and good manners

PUBLISHED: 16:00 02 August 2018

Bahishte Khan, 15, is a volunteer teacher at the supplementary education classes run at Al Madina Mosque. Photo: Bahishte Khan

Bahishte Khan, 15, is a volunteer teacher at the supplementary education classes run at Al Madina Mosque. Photo: Bahishte Khan


A schoolgirl who teaches youngsters good manners, how to respect their elders and basic Arabic for two hours a day, five-days a week has been nominated for our Young Citizen Award.

Bahishte Khan, 15, of Elstree Gardens, Ilford, leads classes of around 20 boys aged five to eight at the Al Madina Mosque, in Ilford Lane, after school from Monday to Friday.

“The most challenging aspect is balancing it with my education because I’m still at school,” she said.

“Sometimes the pupils are quite tired.”

But Bahishte, a pupil at Lady Aisha Academy, Victoria Road, Barking, enjoys the challenge of bringing the mosque to life and instilling her pupils with confidence.

“When they first start out they are all really quiet and now they are all gushing to me about their holidays,” she said.

“I enjoy trying to make the mosque a fun place for them and finding out about the kids when the come to me for help.”

She also regularly volunteers with community group Serving Humanity which distributes food to rough sleepers weekly in Ilford town centre, Barking and Stratford.

After completing her studies, Bahishte hopes to go into medicine or to become a psychologist.

She was nominated by Ash Khan, co-founder of Serving Humanity and former head of the afterschool classes at Al Madina Mosque.

“She is an enthusiastic and motivated individual who thrives on challenges and is always willing to help wherever she is able,” he said.

He said in her first year she was awarded the Teacher of the Year award.

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

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