Ashton Community Champion
1906. Manhar Taylor
Manhar Taylor, from Ashton-under-Lyne, is a retired NHS nurse who has spearheaded an initiative through his local Hindu temple to deliver over 10,000 meals to older and vulnerable people since March 2020.
Over many years, Manhar has fundraised hundreds of thousands of pounds for charity and community causes, including completing a 440km cycling fundraiser in 2020, retracing Mahatma Gandhi’s famous ‘Salt March’ to raise money for ‘Go Dharmic’, a charity inspired by the idea of Dharma and creating a positive universal impact, bringing individuals together in support of campaigns such as tree-planting and feeding people in need. Manhar was also inspired during lockdown for the Coronavirus pandemic to work with his local Hindu temple and Tameside Indian Centre to deliver home-cooked meals for vulnerable and isolated members of the community who were unable to come together at the temple whilst restrictions were in place. Since restrictions have been lifted, Manhar has still been keeping the scheme running as a way of continuing to reduce loneliness and social isolation.
In a personal letter to Manhar, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
“As we celebrate the festival of Vaisakhi I was inspired to hear of your long service to the NHS and how you have devoted yourself to charitable initiatives for over 45 years.
Alongside your team of volunteers, you have cooked up thousands of hot, healthy meals for elderly people in your community. It is wonderful that you are continuing this initiative beyond the pandemic.”
Angela Rayner, Manhar’s local MP for Ashton-under-Lyne, said:
“I am so incredibly proud of Manhar for the work he does throughout my constituency to support some of our most vulnerable residents. He always puts others before himself and finds it difficult to accept the praise that he most definitely deserves. It’s wonderful that he has been given a Points of Light Award and it is fitting recognition of his outstanding efforts.”
“I volunteer to help people, and particularly those in need, rather than for recognition but it’s still a huge moment in my life to receive this award. I would urge others to give their time and energy, I would like to see all my friends and family and others doing one good deed for a total stranger everyday.”
Pictured: Manhar with his ‘Man of Year’ at the Fusion Awards in 2012, an award which helps promote charity workers and volunteers in the North West