Queen Elizabeth honours Pakistani volunteers with Commonwealth award

Points of Light Award given to Rizq foundation for providing food security to local communities

Our Correspondent June 06, 2020
Points of Light Award given to Rizq foundation for providing food security to local communities. PHOTO: TWITTER/@RoyalFamily

ISLAMABAD: Britain’s Queen Elizabeth honoured two Pakistani volunteers with a 'Commonwealth Points of Light Award' during a phone call hosted by British High Commissioner Christian Turner.

The award to Huzaifa Ahmad (Co-Founder and CEO Rizq) and Hassaan Irfan (Executive Director, Rizq), recognise their work in providing food security to local communities, especially during the coronavirus pandemic.

"The call with Her Majesty The Queen also marked National Volunteering Week in the UK, an annual celebration of the power and contribution of volunteering," read the official statement.

Social enterprise Rizq, which started as a university project in 2015 aimed at ensuring a hunger free Pakistan by distributing excess food to the most vulnerable.

During the coronavirus pandemic and in the holy month of Ramazan,  Huzaifa and Hassaan mobilised a network of over 3,000 volunteers to distribute over 2.2 million meals to across 23 cities.

"Food is a fundamental need. For every human to reach his or her true potential it is important for this basic right to be accessible, affordable and available," said CEO Rizq, Huzaifa felicitating the queen for recognising their efforts.

"I would like to dedicate it to our amazing volunteers and Rizq heroes," he added.

Hassaan said: "We have more food than ever before yet more people than ever go hungry every day. We all have an individual responsibility to eliminate hunger – no one should go without a daily meal."

“This award is a tribute to the people of Pakistan, the work of volunteers in Pakistan, and our strong tradition of helping each other,’ he added.

The British high commissioner said that it was an honour that the Queen Elizabeth recognised Rizq’s remarkable work to tackle food insecurity.

"Moments like this are examples of the profoundly positive relations between the UK, Pakistan and Commonwealth,” he added.

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