'Pillar of the West End community' inspires son's fundraising challenge during Ramadan – Chronicle Live

Asif Saleem is taking on a charity challenge inspired by his late father Mohammed.
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Asif Saleem, 36, is doing 100 press-ups each day for the duration of Ramadan to raise money and to pay tribute to his dad Mohammed – a "pillar of the community" who died in 2021.
Asif, like his father, is a chartered accountant and based in Gosforth. His dad died aged 73 in October 2021 after a sudden and catastrophic brain haemorrhage.
Mohammed had been an accountant with a practice in Newcastle's West End – Pageline Solutions on Westgate Road – for more than two decades. After his death, Asif said the family had been "inspired and humbled" by the many stories they had been told of Mohammed's generosity.
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He said his fundraising challenge to raise money for a well in Kenya, where Mohammed came from, was an example of him "trying to take a leaf out of dad's book". As it is Ramadan, Asif is fasting during daylight hours.
Speaking about his dad, he said: "My dad was just a fantastic individual. Not only was he a brilliant father and a massive family man, but he was also a real pillar of the community. He was an accountant for over twenty years and had a practice in the West End.
"Since he died I have really been humbled by the stories people have literally come up to me in the street to tell me. People talking about how he helped them, perhaps financially, but also emotionally.
"Unfortunately he passed away in 2021 – taken far too young I would say. He suffered a sudden brain haemorrhage and didn't wake up. He was 73."
Mohammed left family including wife Zahida and four children. Asif explained: "It was unexpected. As a family we were just coming out of the lockdown and I had actually just moved back from Abu Dhabi. The idea was for my daughter to be able to spend time the best granddad you can imagine. Sadly we only had a few months, but they were a few wonderful months."
As for his press-up challenge, he explained he wanted to channel his dad's charitable spirit. "We have seen how many local and national charities [my father] was supporting during his life," Asif said. "And I wanted to take a leaf out of his book. I feel it's the least I can do. The idea is I do 100 press-ups a day, all while fasting. It's all in aid of raising money to build a well in Kenya, where my dad is from.
"We are on day six, and it has been great to see all of the donations come in. We have raised 75% of my target. It's not been too bad so far, though it's tough. Especially towards the end I can get hungry. Thinking about dad at the end of the day gets me through. And my three-year-old has been trying to get in the press-up position too, to support!"
Visit Asif's fundraising page here.


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