A former foster child who founded an Oldham based community organisation has been named in the New Year’s honours list 2021.

Moinul Islam, 44, from Oldham has received an MBE for services to sports, community and education. He was born in Bangladesh and came to the UK aged six. He was privately fostered and spent his childhood and teenage years in London.

He left his foster parents at the age of 18 and moved around before finally settling in Oldham in 2000. He has a son and daughter.

He founded Outta Skool in 2009 which offers adults and children the opportunity to take part in different sports. All their activities are non-mainstream and differ from what school curriculums offer.

Moinul said: “I set up the organisation to create opportunities for under privileged young people to take part in sports. Basically everything I wanted to do as a child but didn’t have the opportunity to.

“Outta Skool has grown over the years and is now home to different clubs for young people including: Boxing, Taekwondo, Muay Thai, Kick Boxing and Kabaddi clubs. We work with over 130 young people every week and offer over 150 hours of organised activities every month to adults and children.”

“We are developing every year, I ran the organisation literally from my phone but now we work out of seven community centres as well as having our own venue. I have just raised funds for a minibus.”

Also a children’s book author, his contribution to sport, education and health and well-being in the community has been recognised.

Regarding his interest in writing, he stated: “As a child I really enjoyed reading all types of books including comics. I was forced to sit down and write after I promised my daughter that I would write her a story and she would be the main character.”

He has since written a series of books called ‘Anisha’s Adventures,’ three of which have been published and may be made into a cartoon.

About receiving the MBE he said: “I have no words to explain how it feels to receive this honour. To get an MBE for something that I am passionate about and truly enjoy doing has overwhelmed me. It always feels great to be recognised for the work we do voluntarily.

“I have been working to make a difference in the community since my teenage years from helping people with interpreting to running campaigns to rid flats of pests. I have won numerous awards for the work I’ve done in the community over the years but the MBE is my greatest achievement.”

During the Covid-19 pandemic, Moinul has delivered online sports sessions, quizzes and challenges; they have volunteered to help with door step testing in BAME areas. Also, they have supported other organisations with funding, delivering food parcels and essentials throughout the lockdown.

Moinul’s family and friends are really proud of him and he has received over 200 messages from well-wishers.