The founder of Epping Forest’s largest emergency food agency was “humbled” to receive a prestigious award in a ceremony at the Palace of Westminster.

3Food4U’s chair of trustees Pesh Kapasiawala was one of 29 people to be honoured with a British Citizen Award on Thursday, receiving the honour for his services to the community.

He was presented with his medal of honour by Katie Procter, Head of Supported Housing from founding sponsors Places for People, and TV presenter and Patron of the BCA Nick Knowles, who hosted the event.

Epping Forest Guardian: Pesh received his honour at the Palace of Westminster.Pesh received his honour at the Palace of Westminster. (Image: 3Food4U)

Pesh said “It still hasn’t sunk in that I’ve been honoured with The British Citizen Award. Seeing and hearing from so many amazing community champions that have climbed and moved mountains to support their communities I feel humbled to be amongst them.

“I'm very thankful and grateful for the support of my community in Epping Forest and that of the hundreds of volunteers that have stepped up to deliver the projects I organise.

“This is an incredible day for us all involved at 3Food4U, 3Social&WarmPlace4U and YES Partnership, volunteers, donors, supporters, funders, and service users.

“The icing on the cake was when Nick Knowles thanked all our amazing volunteers for supporting over 1500 families in a dignified manner on a personal video message.”

Pesh thanked Epping Forest District Council, Essex Police - Epping Forest District, Waltham Abbey Town Council, Loughton Town Council, Ongar Town Council, Parish of High Ongar, Waltham Abbey Baptist Church, All Saints Church Chigwell Row, National Lottery Community Fund, Essex County Council, Essex Association of Local Councils, Bondi Foundation and Joseph and Lilian Sully Foundation among many others for their support.

Epping Forest Guardian: All the January award winners.All the January award winners.

The British Citizen Award in partnership with One Stop, is now in its ninth year and recognises exceptional people in January and July each year.

The January medallists have collectively been responsible for more than £7.25million in fundraising, have impacted over 272,000 individuals, and have been collectively committed to their chosen causes for more than 395 years.

Dubbed ‘The People’s Honours’, the BCA has so far recognised more than 450 exceptional individuals for their endeavours, making them a very exclusive group of the nation’s favourites.

Anyone with an MBE, OBE or Knighthood is ineligible for a BCA having already been deemed to have received recognition, however, anyone receiving the BCA can still be nominated for the other honours. Nominations can be made a