Young volunteer wins Jack Petchey Award and gifted a Tablet to be used by Homeless people to reconnect with loved ones.


London: (By Hannah Chowdhry) Naomi Chowdhry finally received her Jack Petchey Award which she had won in 2021.  Due to COVID-19 concerns ceremonies were not held by all schools last year. This year the Epping Schools Ceremony was held on 11th July 2022, at the Sir James Hawkey Hall in Woodford from 7.30pm – 9.30pm.

Naomi was given her award for the volunteering she has regularly been undertaking helping give food to Redbridge’s homeless people at Clementswood Community Centre.

On the night she was also awarded a tablet which was funded by a Jack Petchey grant and a top-up from her local school, who were impressed with our project. The tablet will now be used to help homeless people reconnect with loved ones, contact with services such as Westminster project who provide counselling and drug rehabilitation and to help those seeking work to find opportunities.

Naomi will continue her volunteering while her older sister Hannah Chowdhry (18 yrs) who began and developed the Meals for the Needy Project now moves to Scotland to study law.

Naomi has been so dedicated to this project that late on 31st December 2021 she was helping feed homeless people, even though it was her birthday the next day.  Here is a video she made

Naomi is not the only young person to have volunteered at the BACA ‘Meals for the Needy’ project, in fact many students undertaking their Duke of Edinburgh Awards or Jack Petchey Awards participate (click here). 

Naomi Chowdhry, said:

“I have really enjoy distributing food to homeless and other people who attend the Meals for the Needy project.

“I cannot imagine what it would be like to be without food for a day and am glad our project prevents that happening three days a week.

“Most of the people that attend the meals project are very grateful and that makes my effort rewarding.

“I am glad we have the tablet now, it means homeless people who have been out of touch with family and friends can reconnect.

“I also hope some people can get employment through the opportunity.” 

You can learn more about our ‘Meals for the Needy project (here).

Our meals for the homeless project provides a food bank and hot meals to up to 40 people a day, three times a week.   It is run entirely on the support of our donors and with your help we can reach even more.  

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