Daksha lost her baby daughter in 1988 when Bhavini was only 11 months old.
The trauma of Bhavini’s death lives on with Daksha. It is the engine in her tireless pursuit to raise vital funds to stop this devastating disease.
Daksha and her husband Dilip have fundraised and raised awareness with us since we were the Meningitis Trust. They are now gearing up to hold an amazing charity ball to honour the 35th anniversary of Bhavini’s death and to highlight the need for raising funds to ensure no more families face the loss of a child.
The ball will be a glitzy, glamorous affair with many inspirations from Daksha’s Gujarati Hindu culture. Initially organized for 2020 but disrupted by the pandemic, the ball will be coming back bigger and better on December the 2nd in Oldham, Manchester.
Even through recent bouts of ill health and losing both her parents, Daksha remains committed to raising the profile of Meningitis Now as well as vital funds for continued research into vaccines. Daksha and Dilip were instrumental in the success of our Beat it Now! Campaign to get the MenB vaccine included on the NHS’s infant vaccine programme in 2013.
Daksha is no stranger to organising balls in aid of charity – she held an incredibly successful ball in 2008 which raised £74k for her chosen charities, which included Meningitis Now. As well as organisational skills, Daksha has utlised her cooking talent to benefit others.
During the Covid-19 lockdown she worked with a friend to deliver food packages for people in need. Daksha then decided to turn her hobby into a bigger enterprise and created ‘My Masala Guru’, with the help of her three sons and close family friends. She used the profits from the business to help fund the upcoming ball, creating spice pastes so that home cooks could recreate her delicious dishes in their own kitchens.
Her passionate, enterprising nature led Daksha to be nominated for two Tameside business awards. She went on to win Food Retailer of the Year 2023 and also Business to Customer Person of the Year 2023!
Daksha’s determination to continue with fundraising stems directly from the indescribable loss of Bhavini’s death. She says:
“Within one day our whole lives were turned upside down and I never got to live my dream of raising a little girl.
“I watch my friend’s daughters getting married and I can’t ever have that experience with Bhavini or see her raising her own children. I can’t stop organising and creating, even when people suggest I should because of my health. Bhavani left us with a mission - I don’t want anyone else to go through what we do every day because of meningitis.”
The grief of traumatic death sends shockwaves through whole families. Rather than the pain of the loss ever receding, people find ways of managing it. Daksha’s way of doing this is to keep in constant motion with her amazing plans and innovative enterprises.
This energy has rubbed off on her three sons who have all taken part in their own fundraising bids over the years. Bhaven Mistry, Daksha’s middle son, is currently completing an epic bicycle ride from Spain to London raising funds and awareness for Meningitis Now.
Daksha and Dilip recently welcomed a little granddaughter who brings them immense joy. Mila recently received her meningitis vaccinations, which was an impactful moment for the couple. Dilip was moved to comment: “Our baby will be safe.”
Whilst nothing could ever fill the hole of Bhavini in their lives, Daksha and Dilip are so happy that they were instrumental in the process of making meningitis a thing of the past.
We would like to take the opportunity to thank the Mistry family for their incredible support over the last 35 years and their continued efforts for Meningitis Now. You are truly inspirational, and we are honoured to receive your support.
If you would like to find out more about Dilip & Daksha’s Charity Ball on 2nd December 2023 please visit their website (link in top menu).