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Coronavirus Community Leader

1562. Reena Popat

Reena Popat, from London, has been volunteering alongside her cousin and fellow Point of Light Chandni Sejpal Shah to deliver over 1,700 care packages across London to vulnerable people in response to the pandemic.

Reena Popat with Chandni Sejpal Shah

Together with Chandni and a team of volunteers, they have delivered food and supplies to homeless people, working with mother and baby hostels, women’s hostels, young people’s hostels and hostels with residents that are entrenched rough sleepers with very complex needs. They have also delivered over 700 care packages to NHS staff and patients across hospitals in London, the ambulance service, fire service, hospices and a nursing home, as well as provided more than 450 activity packs to support children in local hospitals and for their siblings, as well as for neonatal families at the Neonatal intensive care unit and special care baby units.

In a personal letter to Reena, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:

“One of the most uplifting aspects of the last year has been the renewed spirit of volunteering across the nation.

“Alongside your cousin and fellow Point of Light, Chandni, you have devoted yourself to those in need throughout this pandemic. From care packages for those who have fled abuse, to activity packs for children in hospital and food for homeless people, I am filled with admiration for the astonishing scale of your work.”

Reena said:

“With the gloom and despair of Covid-19, my cousin Chandni Sejpal Shah and I wanted to show our support for the community and those most in need. With the considerable donations received from our families, friends, colleagues and virtual strangers we were able to deliver meal deals to the homeless and care packs to front line workers. With so much generosity and kindness we have been able to continue our efforts for nine very challenging months.

“I am honoured to receive the Points of Light Award from the Prime Minister and equally proud to be part of this community. So many people have come together in these vital times to show unity and provide cheer not only to those most in need but also to those who continue to work tirelessly.”

The daily Points of Light award recognises outstanding individual volunteers - people who are making a change in their community.

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