Keighley doctor’s new role as global disaster relief charity director

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Dr Aziz Hafiz is the new director of charity Humanity First Dr Aziz Hafiz is the new director of charity Humanity First

A Keighley-born GP has been appointed to a top post with a charity providing help to disaster victims across the world.

And Dr Aziz Hafiz, the new director of international disaster relief with Humanity First, is heading to Jordan within days to see if the organisation can help desperate refugees fleeing the conflict in Syria.

There are 2.5 million people, over half of them children, seeking refuge.

Dr Hafiz – who is president of Keighley Ahmadiyya Muslim Association – will meet UN and British Embassy staff in Amman, and visit a refugee camp.

He said the main aim of the three-day visit was to establish if Humanity First could assist by providing schooling for the children.

“A large proportion of the refugees are youngsters and many have been orphaned,” said Dr Hafiz, a father of two boys, aged nine and six.

“The UN has done a massive amount, but it is crying out for charities to fill the gaps.

“We work closely with the authorities and other organisations internationally in these situations to help establish what assistance is required and whether we could offer help on the ground.

“In Jordan we will be looking at the possibility of sending teachers to the refugee camps.”

The charity, which is based in Britain but has branches globally, has teams of volunteers from many different professions who offer their services in times of need.

It was formed about 20 years ago by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association, but is a non-religious organisation with members from all backgrounds and walks of life.

“We are a small player in terms of disaster relief, but we like to think that we punch above our weight,” said Dr Hafiz, 40, a former pupil of the old Greenhead School in Keighley.

“We have helped the victims of many disasters over the years, from the tsunami of 2004 to hurricanes and earthquakes.”

Where needed, the organisation can send a rapid response medical team – including surgeons and paramedics – within 24 hours of being alerted.

But help may also be provided longer term, as people in shattered communities try to rebuild their lives.

“Assistance is often needed as the community attempts to get back on its feet and we have people who can help in many ways – perhaps by setting up schemes so that folk can become self-sufficient,” said Dr Hafiz.

“It’s not just in the immediate aftermath of a disaster that we can be there.”

Comments (9)

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5:23pm Sat 10 May 14

awasteoftime says...

I am sure that this is a very noble cause and good luck to him. However I understood that this Doctor was a GP in the Bingley area with many local patients to look after so has he found a replacement to look after his patient list in his absence or is a case of sorry you will have to wait until I get back home ?
GP's are very well paid following the revised contracts introduced in Blair so they need to think about the patients they are paid to service.
I am sure that this is a very noble cause and good luck to him. However I understood that this Doctor was a GP in the Bingley area with many local patients to look after so has he found a replacement to look after his patient list in his absence or is a case of sorry you will have to wait until I get back home ? GP's are very well paid following the revised contracts introduced in Blair so they need to think about the patients they are paid to service. awasteoftime
  • Score: -5

7:15pm Sat 10 May 14

cockadoodledo says...

I am a patent at Oak Glen surgery in Eldwick. I know full well that it is very difficult to book an appointment with the doctor normally, sometimes 10 days wait, how on earth can a responsible doctor commit himself to something g like this? Does this mean he will leave the practice to follow anotherr career. ?The remaining doctor is only part time so waiting for appointments can only get longer!!
I am a patent at Oak Glen surgery in Eldwick. I know full well that it is very difficult to book an appointment with the doctor normally, sometimes 10 days wait, how on earth can a responsible doctor commit himself to something g like this? Does this mean he will leave the practice to follow anotherr career. ?The remaining doctor is only part time so waiting for appointments can only get longer!! cockadoodledo
  • Score: -2

8:21pm Sat 10 May 14

sbr___ says...

Shocking negative comments above. I bet the NHS will not be out of pocket from this. It's likely this charity work will be done in this doctor's spare time, annual leave, or unpaid leave. That's a big commitment and should be applauded. If you have issues with the level of free healthcare you enjoy then start voting out parties who are trying to erode it further.
Shocking negative comments above. I bet the NHS will not be out of pocket from this. It's likely this charity work will be done in this doctor's spare time, annual leave, or unpaid leave. That's a big commitment and should be applauded. If you have issues with the level of free healthcare you enjoy then start voting out parties who are trying to erode it further. sbr___
  • Score: 6

11:24pm Sat 10 May 14

lazybeat says...

every gp practice is hard to get an appointment whether the doctor is there or not. doing charity work comes out of your own pocket. you either take annual leave or loose it sabbatical leave.
every gp practice is hard to get an appointment whether the doctor is there or not. doing charity work comes out of your own pocket. you either take annual leave or loose it sabbatical leave. lazybeat
  • Score: 0

11:26pm Sat 10 May 14

lazybeat says...

its hard to get an appointment in any gp practice whether the doctor is there or not. when you do charity work you either take it as annual leave or sabbatical leave which you don't get paid for.
its hard to get an appointment in any gp practice whether the doctor is there or not. when you do charity work you either take it as annual leave or sabbatical leave which you don't get paid for. lazybeat
  • Score: 0

7:45am Sun 11 May 14

Zafaress says...

Well done Dr Hafiz, we need more people like you who help the needy wherever they are. I know almost all the Humanity First helpers are self financed volunteers and give their valuable time at their own expense to serve humanity. Instead of criticising go out and do something useful, like the HF volunteers. They have helped thousand in Africa by giving back their sight with free cataract ops, given the needy water for life by installing water pumps and solar panels for electricity, I could go on but you can go on their website and see for yourself. This is the only charity which do not deduct any expenses from the donations, because the volunteers are self supporting.
Zaf from Luton.
Well done Dr Hafiz, we need more people like you who help the needy wherever they are. I know almost all the Humanity First helpers are self financed volunteers and give their valuable time at their own expense to serve humanity. Instead of criticising go out and do something useful, like the HF volunteers. They have helped thousand in Africa by giving back their sight with free cataract ops, given the needy water for life by installing water pumps and solar panels for electricity, I could go on but you can go on their website and see for yourself. This is the only charity which do not deduct any expenses from the donations, because the volunteers are self supporting. Zaf from Luton. Zafaress
  • Score: 2

9:35am Sun 11 May 14

They only do damage! says...

sbr___ wrote:
Shocking negative comments above. I bet the NHS will not be out of pocket from this. It's likely this charity work will be done in this doctor's spare time, annual leave, or unpaid leave. That's a big commitment and should be applauded. If you have issues with the level of free healthcare you enjoy then start voting out parties who are trying to erode it further.
There is no such thing has (free healthcare) unless your unemployed. All those that work would have the best care in the world, if there N,I contributions were paid to a private firm. It is extremely insulting to the working poor to say they recieve it for free.
[quote][p][bold]sbr___[/bold] wrote: Shocking negative comments above. I bet the NHS will not be out of pocket from this. It's likely this charity work will be done in this doctor's spare time, annual leave, or unpaid leave. That's a big commitment and should be applauded. If you have issues with the level of free healthcare you enjoy then start voting out parties who are trying to erode it further.[/p][/quote]There is no such thing has (free healthcare) unless your unemployed. All those that work would have the best care in the world, if there N,I contributions were paid to a private firm. It is extremely insulting to the working poor to say they recieve it for free. They only do damage!
  • Score: 3

3:50pm Sun 11 May 14

awasteoftime says...

I have not criticised the Doctor for his charity work but he has been trained out of out taxes to be a GP it is up to him what he wishes to do put as he runs a GP practise his first port of call is for his patients that he has chosen to serve. Should he choos not to do this fine go abroad and do all the charity work you choose but do not leave the patients without suitable health care. Appointments are already a problem this can only make it worse. As has been said above there is no such thing as free health care most of us have to pay unless you are unemployed a tourist or immigrant, they seem to get it free unlike the Brits when they go abroad. Please do not get on the Africa band waggon we give them 11 billion pounds a year and all they can do is kill and kidnap women, I am sure that is not what Islam should be teaching. Anyone can go and work in Africa maybe that would be a good solution as they have a lot more space than we have in England as we are pretty full up !!
I have not criticised the Doctor for his charity work but he has been trained out of out taxes to be a GP it is up to him what he wishes to do put as he runs a GP practise his first port of call is for his patients that he has chosen to serve. Should he choos not to do this fine go abroad and do all the charity work you choose but do not leave the patients without suitable health care. Appointments are already a problem this can only make it worse. As has been said above there is no such thing as free health care most of us have to pay unless you are unemployed a tourist or immigrant, they seem to get it free unlike the Brits when they go abroad. Please do not get on the Africa band waggon we give them 11 billion pounds a year and all they can do is kill and kidnap women, I am sure that is not what Islam should be teaching. Anyone can go and work in Africa maybe that would be a good solution as they have a lot more space than we have in England as we are pretty full up !! awasteoftime
  • Score: 0

4:01pm Sun 11 May 14

cockadoodledo says...

I thought GPS were overworked and underpaid? That is why surgeries are closed weekends a d are only open limited hours during the week. I just can't see how Dr Hafiz will be able to fulfilling both roles successfully.
I just hope that provision is made for a replacement, that's all.
I thought GPS were overworked and underpaid? That is why surgeries are closed weekends a d are only open limited hours during the week. I just can't see how Dr Hafiz will be able to fulfilling both roles successfully. I just hope that provision is made for a replacement, that's all. cockadoodledo
  • Score: 0

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