talkhealth would like to congratulate Trishna Bharadia, who has been recognised by the Prime Minister for supporting people living with MS and other chronic conditions.
Trishna is the latest recipient of the Points of Light award, which recognises outstanding volunteers who are making a change in their community and inspiring others. Each day, someone, somewhere in the country is selected to receive the award to celebrate their remarkable achievements.
Diagnosed with MS herself in 2008, at the age of 28, Trishna wanted to help others in a similar situation. Despite having a full-time job as a translator for a business intelligence company, Trishna spends many hours each week working with multiple stakeholders at a local, national and international level, to bring about change.
Her work includes blogging, vlogging, writing for various publications, being a media spokesperson on healthcare issues, speaking at events and conferences, and co-creating services and information. She’s an Ambassador for MS Society UK and ADD International, is a Patron for ParaDance UK and the Cambridge MS Therapy Centre, and sits on the committee for national support group Asian MS. She has been pioneering in leading the conversation about MS and chronic illness in Asian communities.
Trishna, who appeared on the BBC’s ‘People’s Strictly for Comic Relief’, also regularly leads talks and advises on research studies and projects, educating healthcare professionals about living with MS, an illness that affects 100,000 people in the UK. Some key highlights to her work include co-developing a six-week “Living Well With MS” course together with Sue Ryder, speaking at the Houses of Parliament on employment issues and MS as part of the MS Society’s “MS Enough” campaign, and empowering young people with MS to get involved in patient advocacy as a speaker at the inaugural MS Sessions festival in Prague,
In a personal letter to Trishna, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“Your invaluable work as an ambassador for the MS Society is raising awareness of Multiple Sclerosis and other chronic conditions. Your outreach work, particularly to people in the Asian community, is providing essential information and support to so many others who are living with the condition.”
“This is amazing news. It’s great to have an initiative that recognises all the work that volunteers are doing across the country, as it will hopefully encourage others to get involved. Hopefully they’ll enjoy it as much as I do! It’s also great for further raising awareness about MS and chronic illness, as well as the work that the various organisations I’m involved with, such as the MS Society, MS-Uk and the MS Trust, do.”
Trishna is the 974th winner of the Points of Light award, which has been developed in partnership with the hugely successful Points of Light programme in the USA. Over 6,000 Points of Light have been awarded in the USA, and former Presidents have publicly supported the partnership with Points of Light UK. There is a similar cross-party approach to the UK programme and MPs from different parties often present their constituents with their Points of Light awards.
Regardless of whether it’s a doctor restoring local monuments in her free time, a father teaching young people life skills, or a local musician giving a voice to lonely people, the Points of Light award honours shining examples of volunteering across the UK.