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Prof. Geetha Upadhyaya

Bradford is a world within a city where people from various backgrounds have made it their home for many years. One of the main groups, the Hindu community, have contributed enormously to the wealth, growth and prosperity of Bradford through their customs, cultural, spiritual heritage and traditions thereby enhancing Bradford’s reputation as a truly vibrant multicultural city on the world stage.

The Bradford Hindu Council (BHC) is a representative body of various established Hindu Organisations of Bradford and the surrounding areas of West Yorkshire. The BHC aims to ensure that the voice of Hindus in Bradford is heard and they are consulted on matters which directly and indirectly impact their lives. As individuals and separate organisations, the Hindu community has many talents and strengths.  The purpose of the BHC is to bring together these collective strengths for the benefit of the Hindu community and the wider society.

In addition, BHC promotes and leads initiatives which positively contribute to the local community.   The BHC’s ethos is ‘collaborative working’ which is sure to create something extraordinary for Bradford.

Although the BHC has been working behind the scenes for few years, the COVID challenge brought them to the forefront as they faced the challenging task of working within the COVID guidelines and yet ensuring that their mission is achieved.

The BHC was acknowledged for their unstinted work and here are a few salient examples of BHC’s contribution to address the mental and physical well being of the communities in Leeds and Bradford.

Focussing on the food distribution for the needy was a salient work of the BHC thanks to the generosity of many Bradford based shopkeepers and members of the Bradford community who donated food at cost price and the enthusiastic volunteers who tirelessly distributed the food packs all across Bradford and Leeds. Raising over £5000.00 from money (inc. gift aid) & food donations for local food banks along with collecting food items, the BHC made over 1600 delicious meals for the key workers in the Police, NHS, Care Homes, Disabled Schools etc.

Graham Walker – (Acting Chairperson) at the Food Bank said “we are hugely grateful to the Bradford Hindu Council and all the Hindu community for this massive donation and the various other donations of food received. It is very difficult to get funding for food so this will mean a lot to all the venerable people we serve on a daily basis. Through your contacts we have opened up accounts with the local cash carry’s which will allow us to buy very essential items in bulk at cost price.” A Big thank you from the all the team at the Food Bank.”

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BHC also supported local schools with classroom materials which remained open for the keyworkers children and organised the International Day of Yoga which attracted over 250 people which helped people realise the importance of physical and mental well-being.

Engaging over 150 people (many under the age of 40) through 10 projects on International Day of Volunteering, the BHC’s support benefitted schools, parks and places of worship.

Ms. Anna O’Mahoney,  CEO, Mirfield-based Hollybank Trust appreciated the selfless work of the BHC in putting the needs of our children and young people and adults first.

Asian Lite conveys its good wishes to the BHC for their continued service to the society.

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