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BAPS Volunteer receives Coronation Champions Award

The award recognised 500 UK citizens for their voluntary welfare services

Shushma Patel, a volunteer at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir (Image: Twitter/@BAPS)

Shushma Patel, a volunteer at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London, has been selected as a ‘Coronation Champion’ for her outstanding commitment to volunteering, a statement by the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha revealed. The coronation is scheduled to happen in May.

P‌‌atel has served as the national coordinator for BAPS youth activities in the UK for 25 years. She has encouraged women across the country to enhance their skills, foster community involvement, personal development, healthcare and wellbeing.  During the Covid pandemic outbreak, Patel also served the local community through vaccination programs at her pharmacy and championed community work as a local business leader.

“Shushma is a role model to women. Despite being a full-time working mother who runs her own pharmacy business, she has dedicated time to developing young women to progress their volunteering and professional lives and start their own businesses," Dr Mayank Shah, a trustee at the Mandir, said. Shah noted that Patel encouraged youth teams to raise funds for medical equipment and offered her pharmacy as a community hub for local residents to receive advice, support and vaccinations.

Reacting to the news, Patel said, “It is an honour to be selected as a Coronation Champion. I am immensely grateful to my guru His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj for instilling the ethos of volunteerism and service. He has served others selflessly, and his guiding principles drive us to give back in return.”

According to the news release, the Coronation Champions Award for volunteers rewards individuals' contributions to their communities. The 500 receipients who have been selected throughout the UK, will receive an official Coronation Champions pin and a certificate signed by The King and The Queen Consort.