British-Pakistani ‘hero’ honored for saving almost 30 lives

Rizwan Javed, from Leyton, works for the MTR Elizabeth line at Ealing Broadway and Paddington stations

LONDON: An exceptional British-Pakistani railway worker who has saved 29 people from taking their lives since 2015 has been appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE).

Rizwan Javed, from Leyton, east London, works for the MTR Elizabeth line at Ealing Broadway and Paddington stations.

He has helped save several lives on the platform during the course of his work by being alert and reaching out to vulnerable people in difficult situations.

Javed joined the railway about 10 years ago and early in his career attended the Samaritans training course.

He said Geographic news in an interview: “I am grateful to Allah for this honor. All thanks to the prayers of my parents I have been recognized in the King’s New Year’s Honors List. “It is a great honor for me that my work in the area of ​​mental health has been recognized in this way.”

He said his work with the Samaritans is the key. “With the Samaritans I learned how to identify vulnerable people, what kind of conversations to have with them, how to engage them, how to be attentive and how to get them to a safe place,” she said.

During the first week after starting work on the railway, Javed helped prevent someone from taking their own life.

In 2019, Javed, who previously worked for Great Western Railway (GWR), won the Samaritans Lifesaver Award, which recognizes people who have used their speaking and listening skills to save lives.

He said Geographic news who believes that Allah will always reward him for helping others and being there for those who have no one else to talk to or suffer with. He credited his Pakistani parents for teaching him from a young age the importance of being helpful and charitable.

He said: “My parents always taught me how to be a good and useful citizen, how to make a positive difference.”

Javed recalled that he once spoke to a girl in her 20s after identifying that she needed help. “A few days later, she came running up to me at the station and gave me a big hug. He said she wouldn’t be alive today if he hadn’t talked to her that night and if he hadn’t convinced her that her life was worth living. It was very emotional and rewarding.”

He said people are not educated about mental health issues and these things have a big impact.

Javed and his parents were thrilled when they received the letter from the government informing him that he would be made an MBE for his services.

He said people’s facial expressions, the type of clothes they wear according to weather conditions, missing a train, acting strangely, being wayward and asking about ongoing services are signs that a person needs help.

He said mental health issues affect all communities, but it is important to allocate more resources to address them.

MBE is the third highest level of Order of the British Empire (excluding knighthood/dame), behind CBE and then OBE.

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