Making Beeston better
Siblings join forces to bring community together
Three sisters from a Leeds suburb, who say they were ‘tired of seeing negative news stories appear about the place where they live’, have united their local community to organise a family ‘Funday’ this weekend.
The siblings, Yasmeen Akhtar, 33, Sophia Khan, 28, and Miriam Khan, 20, decided it was time to take action in Beeston to show the true side of their neighbourhood.
With the trio all running businesses in the area, they put their creative minds together to come up with the charity event, aiming to raise money for Islamic Relief’s Syria Crisis Appeal.
Yasmeen explained: “What we want to do is bring all the communities together to show that Beeston isn’t just about stabbings and horrible incidents that you hear about in the press.
“It is a place where we can come together for a good cause. The response has been amazing so far.”
Before the event even takes place, the ladies have already raised in excess of £1,200 from sponsors, with every penny going to charity.
Funds raised on the day will take this total even higher, and Sophia says it goes to show how ‘united’ the community can be when the time comes.
“The first business we visited said they’d sponsor us straight away,” she said. “It was just a small store but the owner was so excited with the idea that he pledged to get sponsor and get a bouncy castle for us.
“He was the one who said, ‘these girls are onto something’ and from there it has just snowballed into a really big thing.
“We’ve created such a buzz and interest now that we can easily fill the Old Cockburn’s Sports Hall.”
The Funday will be the first official event to be held at the venue since its ownership was overtaken by the Hamara Living Centre.
As well as stalls packed with goods for all ages, entertainment will be on offer for children, including a singing competition for kids from across Leeds.
Nasheed artist, Ahmed Hussain, will also be hosting a live performance on the day.