Trustee receives New Year Honour

03 January 2019
A trustee at Martin House has received an MBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours List.

Rifhat Malik, 51, who has been a trustee at Martin House for three years, was honoured for services to Muslim women and charity.

It is one of a number of accolades Mrs Malik has received recently, as she has also won the Islamic Relief Award for Service to Humanity, a Leeds City Council Compassionate City Award for Unsung Hero of the Year and the Inspiring Women Changemakers Heart of Gold award.

In addition to her trustee role at Martin House, Mrs Malik, along with her husband Hanif is the co-founder of the Give a Gift charity, which they set up four years ago, aiming to get Asian people involved in mainstream charity causes.

Give a Gift has helped to raise £100,000 for Martin House and Leeds Children’s Heart Surgery Fund, along with £20,000 for Candlelighters.

She also established the annual Ramadan Toys Appeal, which has donated more than 3,000 gifts to charities, benefitting more than 500 children and their families.

Mrs Malik said: “I’m very humbled and honoured to have been awarded an MBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours. My husband Hanif, getting his OBE was unreal and this even more so.

“Neither of us ever set out to get accolades, but rather to do whatever we could for those less fortunate than us. I feel so proud and honoured to be awarded the MBE and will continue to do as much as I can to help and serve humanity.

“Equally I am proud to be a trustee at Martin House, and the work and care carried out by everyone to help children and their families is phenomenal.”

As well as her charity work, in 1995 Mrs Malik became the first Muslim woman to qualify as a fitness instructor in Leeds, working with more than 300 isolated women with her classes, as well as helping more than 40 black and minority ethnic women to become qualified instructors.