Shobhna Padhiar: Volunteer, Milton Keynes

Hi, I’m Shobhna

I am now retired following a career in financial services for 40-years.  I am now the assistant secretary for MKHA Community Centre, which brings me a lot of joy. It’s wonderful to know that my experiences allow me to give back to the community in this way. As well as the usual financial responsibilities, I have also led and contributed to many events and fundraising activities, such as raising money to support school visits for Hinduism classes.

Seeing smiles on faces, and sometimes tears of joy, from the people within the community coming to the centre during our events, is wonderful. We make sure that it is beautifully decorated, which the children love. They are always amazed at the types of events we put on. I believe that my service to the community of Milton Keynes really benefits everyone; the community get the opportunity to come together to celebrate religious and other events, as well as children being able to access educational and mindfulness classes.

During the pandemic, it was strange not being able to meet and mix with family, friends and the people of the community.  Part of my role was always to be on hand to listen and help those in need, so during the pandemic, this continued as I supported those who were housebound.  Some people suffering from grief felt comfortable being heard and those who really need help felt that they could ask for it because of the relationships I had previously built. The kindness and helpfulness of neighbours was unbelievable, and so many new friendships were formed because of the pandemic. So many people looked wider than their usual busy lives and found an appreciation for the small things and nature.

Shobhna at MKHA Community Centre

Shobhna at MKHA Community Centre with former Mayor of Milton Keynes, Sam Crooks

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