13 May 2015, London: Zee Companion, the only South Asian TV show that brings to its viewers exclusive Live & local content on Zee TV has reached out to a new set of audience through its latest initiative of community events. On Saturday 9 May, Zee Companion held its first-ever non-profit event at Norwood Hall, Southall. In partnership with Gurdwara Sri Guru Singh Sabha Southall and the Mael Gael Project, Zee TV arranged an interaction of the public with experts on the subject of Stroke and general Health issues.

The event was planned to ultimately raise awareness of, educate and thus prevent, Stroke. But what we achieved was far more as members of the community not only listened to a presentation given by Professor Pankaj Sharma, Director of the Institute of Cardiovascular Research at Royal Holloway, University of London, but they openly shared their own experiences of facing Stroke and coping with family members who have become disabled after suffering Stroke. They were also given the opportunity to ask General Practitioner Dr Nasrin Razzaq any health-related questions and discuss their concerns with a free consultation.

Zee Companion has been adding feathers in its cap one after the other. Earlier this year, owing to the growing response from its viewers, the show increased its on-air time slot from 30 to 60 minutes, accommodating more number of calls and increasing the viewers’ interaction with the guests. Recently the show introduced 2 new hosts, thereby bringing a wider and varied perspective of topics and discussions on the show each day.

Having crossed 300 episodes in April, it was the show’s latest initiative to launch a series of community events and directly reach out to the people, in a social way that will benefit them. When it comes to health, South Asians shy away from discussing certain ailments and voicing their concerns. This event organized by Zee Companion is a great initiative to address this issue and successfully bridge the divide. It was encouraging to see several people let go of their reservations and openly ask questions about their own and their family’s health. The team of Zee Companion and the expert doctors present ensured that the presentation made on Stroke was simple yet highly informative.

With every seat in the hall taken, success spoke for itself. People did not hold back in praising Zee TV and the organisers of the event. Mr Grewal of the Mael Gael Project, and one of the event organisers, explained how loneliness is one of the key factors affecting the South Asian community, and thus these kind of community events help people come together, interact with one another, build a stronger community and create a more positive social environment.

Dedicated watchers of Zee Companion expressed their loyalty to watching the show every evening while the programme also gained new followers as a result of the success of the event. Zee Companion viewer Gurdarshan Deol said, “I am really very pleased about the topic presented by Dr Pankaj and Dr Nasrin. It gave me a lot of information about heart problems and stroke.”

ZEE Network Europe CEO, Mr. Neeraj Dhingra said, “The word ‘Companion’ in ‘Zee Companion’ is pivotal to making the show unique and unlike any other. Our viewers are at the heart of the show, with every topic and discussion aimed to inform, educate and entertain them. So it seemed perfect to meet and help those who are on the other side of the screen. This is why Zee TV has launched such a social initiative to actively participate in helping the community while encouraging people to work together and integrate.”

The tremendous response received is testament to the success of the event, popularity of Zee TV’s Zee Companion, and positive progress for the future of the show and the channel. Viewers and the South Asian community can look forward to many more initiatives from Zee Companion in the coming months.