Doncaster born businessman and philanthropist Tariq Shah, 38, has been awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee honours.
The prestigious honour, awarded to him for philanthropy and services to charity, reflects Tariq’s extensive work with the Prince’s Trust, the Sleep Charity and other causes as well as his efforts to make Doncaster a thriving place to live and work.
Tariq’s support of numerous charities includes being founding board member, mentor and role model at Mosaic, part of the Prince’s Trust, which inspires and mentors young people from deprived communities to help them realise their potential. Tariq is also Chair of The Sleep Charity, which supports and educates children, teenagers and adults to sleep better. Abroad, the Shah family runs the AHS Foundation, which provides essential healthcare to community projects in Kashmir, Pakistan, funding primary healthcare for an average of 600 people per month in a local population of around 10,000 with no alternative healthcare support.
Part of the recently successful effort to have Roman town Doncaster awarded city status, Tariq works closely with Doncaster Council and Chamber and echoes what many say about the new city: that the best thing about it is its people. Teamwork, inclusivity and partnerships are at the heart of everything Tariq does and he is passionate about the great things people can achieve when working together.
“I am greatly honoured to receive this award, but it really belongs to the many people who have volunteered and worked in those organisations I have had the privilege of supporting. The surplus of passion from all those involved has made incredible things possible and it has been the greatest honour to have made even a small contribution to this. I feel fortunate to have strong role models in my parents, empowering me with a strong work ethic and opportunities that many others do not have. For Muslims, charity work is at the heart of faith, so I have invested in helping communities to grow, providing relatable role models for young people, and enabling others to avail themselves of opportunities. When society and our communities thrive, we all benefit, and I hope this award will inspire others to invest time in to their communities as well. I am in no way exceptional, and I hope that others will see this as something that they too can achieve.”
Tariq’s third generation family business Vigo Group specialises in transforming spaces and the places they are set within, taking a whole value chain approach to sustainable development, from the recycling of construction waste into sustainable building materials, through to envisioning new futures for large scale previously developed sites. With its companies TLB Properties and Swan Homes new communities are created through boutique home building, and incubating start-up businesses within commercial spaces.
These businesses place the long-term future of communities at the heart of decision making alongside profit generation.
Cavendish Court in central Doncaster is a perfect example; a listed building saved from dereliction that is now a successful multi-use business park including workspace for start-ups and sole traders.
As Tariq comments:
“We want good quality enduring businesses with a social conscience to thrive and grow in Doncaster.”
Swan Homes is an energy efficient, sustainable housebuilder creating flexible family living spaces, many on reclaimed brownfield sites.
Doncaster’s bid to become the national headquarters for Great British Railways has also involved work by Tariq to promote the city’s credentials and he is Chair of Doncaster’s Town Deal Board, where he was instrumental in obtaining £25 million in Government funding to regenerate underused land adjacent to Doncaster railway station.
Dan Fell is Chief Executive Officer at Doncaster Chamber and he commented:
“On behalf of everyone associated with Doncaster Chamber, I would like to congratulate Tariq on his honour. I have worked closely with Tariq for a number of years and am constantly awed by not just his passion for Doncaster and his communities, but his determination to always strive for high quality and never accept second best. I talk often about the civic credentials of Doncaster’s employers and there is no better example than Tariq who gives his time and talents generously, not just to charitable activities but – via his work with the Chamber and Doncaster’s public sector – to key economic development projects like City Status, the Great British Railways HQ campaign, and Doncaster Town Fund board as well. Not only does Tariq work hard to get things done, he does business in the right way, always valuing the opinions of others and seeking to build sustainable collaborative partnerships. I am delighted that he has been recognised in this way.”
Vicki Beevers is CEO and founder of the Sleep Charity. She said:
“Tariq has provided exemplary strategic leadership during his time as Chair at The Sleep Charity. We had planned a period of significant growth at the charity to meet the huge demand for sleep support that we face and recognised as an organisation that Tariq was the right person to support us with this challenge. He has incredible vision that we have utilised on our Board. I personally was delighted when he accepted the post and have enjoyed working with him over the years. Together we have developed a strategy that will ensure those suffering sleep issues can access support both nationally and internationally. I warmly congratulate Tariq on this well-deserved honour.”
Shabir Randeree CBE is Chair of Mosaic and added to the comments:
“Tariq has been an invaluable board member at Mosaic.
His mentoring skills and support as an advisor to our management has helped us deliver the programme nationwide, and especially in the Yorkshire region. We congratulate Tariq and wish him well as he pursues his civic roles and beyond.”
Tariq summed up:
“I have always believed in grasping opportunities and helping others do the same is a passion of mine. I am totally committed to charitable causes and I also love Doncaster and want to see it take its rightful place in levelling up. The wonderful people I work with all share in this award acknowledgement as without them I just couldn’t achieve what I do.”
The investiture date and venue are yet to be confirmed.
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