Donations wanted to help pioneering cultural club that has united diverse Huddersfield community

Treasurer of the Pakistan Association in Thornton Lodge says that £2000 would help put on courses to help better the lives of those living nearby

Jamil Aktar (centre) with some of the members of the elderly group at the Pakistan Association premises at Thornton Lodge.

Donations are wanted for a pioneering cultural club that works to unite a diverse Huddersfield community.

Members of the Pakistan Association have launched the appeal to help them improve the lives of those living in Thornton Lodge, one of most deprived areas in the town.

Treasurer Jamil Akhtar said that they would like at least £2,000 to help everyone living in the neighbourhood regardless of their heritage, age or gender.

The association wants to use the money to put on a series of events, including a computer basics course, in a bid to tackle the high unemployment levels in the district.

He also said the money could be used to attract more younger members to the Hall Avenue centre to help give them a positive alternative where they can spend their free time.

His request came as the association put out an offer for people to come and use the two storey building to host their own societies and activities for free, as long as they are of benefit to the local community.

The association’s headquarters, which were opened in 1988, has been struggling for funding to put on more activities due to the tough economic climate.

Currently, it is open every Monday from 11am to 2pm when it runs an elderly group drop in.

Jamil, who helped found the club in 1987 to provide help, support and advice to residents, said: “We have been looking for funding to run more courses and events which we think would benefit those living nearby.

“Unemployment is a real problem here so any course or activity that we gain money for to put on will help give people more skills and positive opportunities.

“£2,000 could help pay for a computing tutor for around five weeks and any more would help us put on other activities, such as for young people.

“The association exists to help as many people as possible in the area, regardless of their ethnicity and heritage, and we hope that any extra money will help us extend our services to more. We welcome everyone equally, whether Pakistani or Indian, Asian or white.”

To donate to the Pakistan Association or find out more telephone Jamil on 07786651368.

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