#Cakes4Syria volunteer receives national award
A selfless volunteer who helped spearhead a nationwide campaign raising hundreds of thousands of pounds for charity was awarded last week for his individual efforts.
23-year-old, Abdul Basit, from Bradford, was awarded the Muhammad Yaseen Army Public School Award for his ‘outstanding’ contribution to Islamic Relief’s #Cakes4Syria appeal.
The award was named after one of the children who tragically lost their lives in the Peshawar school shootings last year and Abdul received the accolade from former Liverpool footballers, John Barnes, John Aldridge and Dietmar Hamann.
The local volunteer had been selected from an extensive list by Nasir Awan, uncle of Muhammed Yaseen who was killed in the shooting by Pakistani Taliban.
Upon accepting the award on Friday 13th March, Abdul said: “I was blown away to receive this award.
“We all just get our heads down and work as hard as we can to deliver as many cakes as possible within the time limit, so this is totally unexpected.
“It’s also moving to think the award is named after a boy who died in such tragic circumstances.”
Abdul, an industrial design graduate, helped raise £300,000 in 2014, delivering cakes to doorsteps around the country, whilst developing a marketing and social media action plan throughout the appeal.
He also acted as a focal point for the project, organising teams of volunteers to deliver more than 23,000 cakes to over one-thousand postcodes throughout England, Scotland and Wales.
Islamic Relief community fundraising head, Zia Salik, praised her colleagues efforts and said they have inspired others to take up charity work.
She added: “Abdul is a dedicated, passionate and caring person who provides inspiration through his voluntary work within our community.
“Many young people discovered volunteering for the first time by engaging with the cakes project and have since been doing other great work in the community and also helping those in need abroad.”
Funds raised for Islamic Relief’s Syria Appeal helped to provide food, medical assistance, shelter, ambulances and specific support to help children cope with trauma.
The charity’s work with Syrian refugees spans Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and within Syria itself.