Sikh Recovery Network
1350. Jaz Rai
Jaz Rai, from Derby, created the ‘Sikh Recovery Network’ which supports people with drug and alcohol addiction, specifically tackling the stigma of addiction in the Sikh community, by offering group recovery meetings and fitness activities in Sikh temples in Derby, Leicester, Birmingham and Nottingham.
Jaz was a former alcoholic who drank a litre of vodka every day, and felt that the taboo of addiction amongst the Punjabi-Sikh community prevented him and his family from sharing his problems. He managed to turn his life around in 2009 and wanted to build a support network for others in his situation and to break down barriers of shame.
In a personal letter to Jaz, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
“I know you do this with no thought of praise or reward, but allow me to offer my own recognition of how you are tackling the social and cultural stigma of addiction across communities and helping others by bravely sharing your powerful personal story.”