Bollywood actor Jacqueline Fernandez received the International Humanitarian Award and writer Jeffrey Archer the Lifetime Achievement Award at a glittering ceremony here on Friday that recognised the work of charity organisations in the UK and abroad.
Instituted by Asian Voice, a leading British Asian newsweekly, the “charity of the year” award at the event compered by model Elena Fernandes was presented to Anxiety UK, which works to help people with anxiety disorders.
Fernandez, who has teamed up with the charity Habitat for Humanity, said: “Working with Habitat for Humanity for the last five years has opened my eyes and has given me the opportunity to help so many people live with dignity, by giving them homes to live in. I work in an industry where my co-stars are called heroes, but to me you guys are the real heroes.”
Archer was given the Lifetime Achievement Award for services to various charity organisations over the years.
Rob Wilson, minister in the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, said, “As minister, I have seen how charities can make a huge difference to our society…The contribution of the Asian community to the charity sector is absolutely huge.”
“The concept of ‘sewa’ in the Hindu community literally means selfless services. I want to personally thank you all for the wonderful contributions you make to British society, the work you do and continue to do.”
CB Patel, publisher-editor of Asian Voice’ said: “Innumerable people are engaged in charitable work; some do extremely beneficial work professionally and ethically, some need to develop structure and performances. This (awards) is another step to serve our readers and the community.”
The 2017 winners were:
Start-up of the year: One Kind Act;
Most Enterprising: Akademi;
Social Impact Award: Graham Layton Trust;
Most inspiring individual: Meenal Sachdev;
Charity of the Year: Anxiety UK;
Excellence in CSR: Nationwide Building Society;
Editor's choice awards: Jeffrey Archer (Lifetime Achievement Award), Jacqueline Fernandez (International Humanitarian Award).