London Borough of Croydon

Winner: Bilquis Ahmed

Bilquis has dedicated her entire life to voluntary work. A former teacher, she’s been described as a “legend” in the Asian community. She’s run Elmwood Community Centre for the past 15 years, often funding activities out of her own pocket. It’s thanks to her that over 70 older women now have a place to socialise, make new friends and learn new skills, such as yoga. Mrs Ahmed has reached out to those who would otherwise feel isolated and lonely.