• Tuesday, April 16, 2024

News

Rail worker Rizwan Javed honoured with MBE for saving 29 lives

Since 2015, Javed has intervened to save the lives of individuals contemplating suicide

Rizwan Javed said he attended the Samaritans training course nearly a decade ago when he had joined the railway – Image Credit: Twitter@RizwanJ76733539

By: Kimberly Rodrigues

Rizwan Javed, a rail worker from east London employed by the MTR Elizabeth line at Ealing Broadway station, has been honoured with an MBE for saving 29 people from taking their own lives, the BBC reported.

Since 2015, Javed has intervened to save the lives of these individuals contemplating suicide, by remaining vigilant and approaching those in vulnerable situations.

Alongside his railway duties, the 33-year-old actively uses Instagram and TikTok to share his experiences, aiming to inspire others.

Javed said he attended the Samaritans training course nearly a decade ago when he had joined the railway. Network Rail invested in the course to prevent suicide and to support those who have been affected by it.

Highlighting the course’s significance, he said the course basically teaches you key skills of how to identify vulnerable people, what sort of conversations to have with them and how to take them to a point of safety.

Two days following the training, while working at a station, Javed found himself having to implement the skills acquired and intervened to prevent an individual from taking their own life.

In 2019 he received the Samaritans Lifesaver Award, an accolade honouring individuals who have used their communication skills like talking and listening to prevent tragedies and save lives.

Javed, who previously served at Great Western Railway (GWR), acknowledged the emotional impact of these interventions, emphasising that the people he helps come from diverse age groups.

“Coming from an Asian background, they’re not really educated about mental health,” Javed added.

“If you’re going through mental health issues your mother [will] probably give you a paracetamol and say you’ll be OK in the morning.”

Javed also said that discussing mental health openly, both at work and home, has served as a “coping mechanism” for himself.

Regarding being appointed MBE, he recalled receiving the letter through the post while asleep, and his mother, more enthusiastic, ended up opening it for him.

He said, “But when she told me I had to read it about 10 times to digest it, it was amazing.

“So, I feel like this MBE award has given me the confidence to take it a step further on a wider scale.”

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