King’s was founded on the ambition to serve society. Now, more than ever, this spirit is flourishing, as alumni and their communities have come together to help others.
We’ve been inspired by the many acts of kindness springing up across the world and would love to hear what’s happening in your community. Help us celebrate these by sharing your positive stories of service, big or small, on social media using the hashtags #ForeverKings and #ContinuingToServe or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find out more about how King's is #ContinuingToServe its local, national and international communities. Find out how you can get involved and support your community through volunteering here.
Stay tuned for updates to this page, and other alumni news by following and signing up to our Alumni social media channels via the links below.
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King's alumni recognised as #HeforShe advocate and pioneer
Dr Quraish Khan (MA Criminology and Criminal Justice, 2007) is an Assistant Inspector General in the Police Service of Pakistan with nearly 20 years’ experience in law enforcement. UN Women Pakistan, an organisation that seeks to ensure gender equality is realised in the south asian country, has recognised Dr Khan as someone who 'has taken effective steps to ensure that necessary action is taken to address the institutional and cultural impediments women face when accessing justice' (heforshe.org).
To read more about the work Dr Khan is doing in Pakistan, visit his page on our website: Dr Quraish Khan (kcl.ac.uk)
King's Pakistani alumni community respond to national emergency
Rida Bokhari (MSc International Marketing, 2017), alongside fellow alumni colleagues in Pakistan, is actively involved in supporting local relief campaigns in response to the devastating floods that have reportedly affected 33 million people.
Find out how you can help by reaching out to her on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
King's Professor Stefan Allesch-Taylor lead efforts to evacuate Ukranian orphans
Professor Stefan Allesch-Taylor CBE is the head of Aerial Recovery UK, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) which employs military veterans to rescue vulnerable people from disaster zones.
Over the past few weeks Aerial Recovery UK has worked with Ukraine’s military administration and child services to rescue 1,412 orphans from areas surrounding Kyiv, Kharkiv and Dnipro and relocate them to safety in the western city of Lviv. Some 4,500 vulnerable people were also evacuated, including 2,000 from the besieged south-eastern port city of Mariupol.
Read more in The i
Our alumni community came together for King's Global Day of Service
Each year in March, King’s Global Day of Service brings alumni, students and staff together to volunteer and make a difference in their local and national communities. It’s a great way for everyone to give back and live out King’s ‘ethos’ of service.
Thank you to all those who were involved in 2022! Remember, if you're looking for volunteering opportunities outside of the month of March, you can visit King's Service pages to see how you can take part throughout the year.
Read more about King's Global Day of Service
Alumnus Karim Khan heading ICC’s Russia inquiry
Alumnus and international criminal court prosecutor Karim Khan AKC (LLB Law, 1991) is leading an investigation into the war into both alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in the war in Ukraine.
Prof Phillipe Sands, who has known Khan since teaching him international law at King’s, said his former student had a tough job, but added: 'All the signs are that he will have the capacity to be an independent, fearless and pragmatic prosecutor.'
Read more in The Guardian
How can you help Ukrainian people NOW?
Ukranian alumna Olga Kravchenco (MA Arts & Cultural Management, 2020) has put together a valuable compilation of how non-Ukranians can support Ukraine at the moment.
Read her article on LinkedIn
Pascal Pawel Iwkin (Economics and Management, 2021), working with a group of international friends has developed a platform to connect Ukrainian refugees with volunteers.
Their platform serves as a first point of contact and could be useful to those wishing to offer their homes as part of the Homes for Ukraine scheme in the UK.
Visit their website
Mihaela Angelova (Business Management, 2020) is coordinating support for Ukranians from the European Law Students’ Association Alumni as well as working to set up a network of volunteers and host families in Bulgaria.
Reach out to her if you think you can support (or if you need support)
Reporting from Ukraine
Reporter Philip Crowther (Hispanic Studies, 2006) has been widely praised for his coverage of the war in Ukraine on the ground, including reporting in six different languages.
Read more in The Independent
‘Your commitment is your responsibility to protect your family’ – a public awareness campaign to help stop the spread of COVID-19 in Palestine
Alumnus Majd Zghyer (MA Political Economy, 2017) works for the Palestinian International Cooperation Agency (PICA). PICA shares Palestinian expertise with the world, promoting international cooperation through projects in health, humanitarian aid and more. Majd normally works in private sector engagement. During the pandemic however, he’s had to work on a different kind of engagement – an urgent public awareness campaign to keep his community safe. ‘King’s enriched me with the spirit of serving society. I’m very proud that I’ve been able to translate this spirit into tangible actions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.’ he says.
From distress to a meaningful experience; how a King's alumnus and Doctor is helping frontline staff deal with COVID-19
Dr Muhammad Haniff Bin Abdullah (MSc War & Psychiatry, 2017) is looking after the mental health of frontline staff in Selayang Hospital in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He provides support, interventions and coping strategies for staff. One of his initiatives has been to encourage staff to keep a ‘My COVID-19 journal’ to capture their experience of living through these times. ‘In the face of all the statistics about COVID-19, it’s the personal experiences that matter most. Service for me, means the ability to touch other peoples’ lives.’
A King’s health partnership is supporting the Democratic Republic of Congo in fighting COVID-19
Democratic Republic of Congo
Dr Elizabeth Khadija Tissingh (Medicine, 2008), an alumna and NHS surgeon, is leading a King’s health partnership to help health workers in the Democratic Republic of Congo respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. King’s Kongo Central Partnership (KKCP) is working urgently with the Congolese government, hospitals and the World Health Organisation to help save lives, in a region already facing an ebola and measles outbreak and conflict in the East. KKCP is training doctors to treat COVID-19 patients and supporting the delivery of PPE and other vital supplies. ‘I feel tremendously privileged to be able to improve health outcomes, especially at a time when global solidarity has never been more important,’ she says.
Sufi community live out their ethos of ‘service’ to make and distribute PPE to key workers
Ghonche Alavi (MA Public Policy, 2015) and her Sufi community have distributed over 1000 pieces of PPE to London hospitals and care homes. They’ve sewn face masks, crafted visors, made up care packages and even played live Sufi music to care home residents. Ghonche is very proud to live out the Sufi idea of ‘Khidmat’ or service. ‘As we started to see the impact of the pandemic – specifically the shortage of PPE for front line staff – we knew we had to do something to serve the vulnerable’ she says.
Virtual doctors save lives in Zambia using a smart phone app
Zambia & Malawi via East Sussex
Daniel Grace (Medicine, 2012), GP and volunteer Medical Director of the Virtual Doctors has been supporting frontline health workers in rural Zambia and Malawi, saving lives with just a smart phone. The Virtual Doctors diagnose conditions and treat patients remotely, using an app. Their service has never been more crucial as the country fights the COVID-19 outbreak. They’ve also worked with partners to distribute equipment on the ground, including foot-operated wash stations, soap, hand sanitiser and PPE.
‘One of the positives to emerge out of this pandemic is the collective desire to support society, particularly groups who are vulnerable and isolated’, he says, ‘For me, giving back and contributing to something bigger than ourselves is what service is all about.’
‘United we stand, divided we fall.’
Primary care doctor Myelone Tharmaseelan (Medical Ethics & Law, 2018) is working on the frontline and talks about his pride in doing his best for his people. ‘I have had the immense privilege of serving and treating patients while other fellow Malaysians remain indoors. My courage and spirit have only been amplified as I never felt alone or ever isolated. As the world is gripped with the Corona pandemic and we are all faced with unprecedented challenges, the global effort from so many has ensured that we have the upper hand. Together I believe we can emerge from this much stronger than before.
I would like to thank King’s for imparting knowledge to me and for providing a community of alumni where I can connect and network with others, Doctors and Politicians included, to work hand in hand to ensure a more holistic approach to fight this novel virus. United we stand, divided we fall’ he says.
Providing one million meals for frontline workers
Momin Saqib, alumnus, former KCLSU President and current King's staff member is one of the founders of One Million Meals – a charitable initiative which provides healthy meals to key workers in London including doctors, nurses, police officers and other staff who are playing a vital role in the fight against COVID-19. Momin has been unable to travel back to London from Pakistan, but managed to get the initiative up and running within 48 hours. Now teams across King’s, and his other networks, are coming together to support his vision.
Peking University and alumni communities combine to donate COVID-19 tests and PPE to King's Health Partners
Alumni from Peking University in Beijing and King's alumni community in China have worked together to donate testing equipment and personal protective equipment (PPE) to King’s health partners. Around 10,000 COVID-19 test kits, notably those from the Peking HSBC Business School (PHBS), are being sent to London with the first batch already in operation. The test can provide patient results on the COVID-19 illness in just fifteen minutes. This welcome contribution marks an almost 100 year partnership between King's College London and Peking University. A separate initiative through the King's alumni community in Beijing and Shanghai has seen thousands of donations of PPE for our front-line health staff.
Solidarity, Empathy, and Social Distancing in Naples
Chiara Caiazzo (Comparative Literature, 2019) shares how the Neapolitan spirit of inventiveness, solidarity and empathy, coupled with the tradition of using an 'o panáro' (bread basket), is helping communities in Naples.
The panaro is a basket which the Neapolitans traditionally used to share food with relatives without leaving the house, by lowering the basket down to the street. During lockdown the tradition was reborn as people started to use these these baskets to share food and other essentials with passers-by, so that nobody felt abandoned. The idea spread across the region, with many leaving food supplies outside their doors with the message ‘Those who can give, may give. Those who cannot, may take’. A powerful example of the difference acts of kindness can make, Chiara says ‘If we want a better world we must do something to bring this change and make it last.’
Using social media in 'Service to others'
Alumna Seyran Khalili (Msc Organisational Psychiatry & Psychology, 2017) and five friends have started a Facebook group to bring people together in solidarity. The group is called Nasjonal Dugnad and embodies the idea of ‘Dugnad’ or ‘Service to Others’, an important part of Norwegian culture. The group was set up in the first week of lockdown. It has already attracted 70,000 members and made it onto the national news with content such as video meet ups, mentoring and talks on mental wellbeing. Seyran and her friends were also influential in advocating for the government to close down schools and kindergardens.
Seyran also took part in the ‘HackTheCrisisNorway’, a 48-hour hackathon to find solutions to the Covid-19 crisis. Her team's idea for 'Immunikey', a type of immunity passport made the top 10 out of 300 ideas submitted to 'save business' during the outbreak.
Watch a video about Immunikey
Visit Nasjonal Dugnad on Facebook
Here in the UK there has been an outpouring of help in response to the crisis. Over 750,000 people signed up as National Health Service (NHS) volunteer responders in just a couple of days and 250,000 have signed up to help local charities. Numerous local community support networks have sprung up across the country. Campaigns are spreading messages of hope and thanks as children display their creations of #rainbowsinwindows. And clapping for the NHS has become a weekly celebration, as the public come out on their doorsteps to thank carers and key workers.
The King's Community - Staff & Students
At King's, many of our academic clinicians have stepped up into NHS roles. This includes Professor Ian Everall, Executive Dean of the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN) and Professor Richard Trembath, Executive Dean of the Faculty of Life Sciences and Medicine who said 'As a medical community, we have a responsibility to do everything we can to bolster the NHS frontline response'. Academic staff from the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery and Palliative Care are offering support and training to junior nurses. IOPPN staff are helping to set up a supportive advice line for NHS staff, based on previous work supporting staff in Sierra Leone during the Ebola epidemic. These are just a few of the many examples of staff volunteering their services. And of course we congratulate our final year medical and nursing students who have now graduated, many of whom are now working or volunteering for the NHS.
King's Health Partners
Our hospital partners, Guy's & St Thomas' are at the very heart of the response to the crisis and have been overwhelmed with support and messages of thanks.
Support our hospital partners:
Support Guy's & St Thomas' Hospital
Support Evelina London
King's launches #ContinuingToServe
#ContinuingToServe is a university-wide approach to bringing together, strengthening and celebrating the many ways in which King's people are making a difference, wherever they may be, fulfilling our purpose as a civic university that serves the world. Find out how you can get involved and support your community through volunteering here.
King’s contribution to the coronavirus response
As a world-renowned university, several King’s academics and researchers are playing a key role in supporting the global narrative and response to the COVID-19 outbreak, from providing expert analysis, to researching therapeutic treatments and advising the UK government. We have set up a dedicated website to update you on King’s contribution to the COVID-19 response.
King's COVID-19 appeal
King's has launched an appeal to support research and our incredible NHS partners to get the funding needed to combat the spread of COVID-19. Donate here.