Supporting the Homeless with Christmas Lunch

Over Christmas the Gurkha Memorial Fund supported the local homeless community where a Gurkha Christmas Curry Lunch was held at the offices of Independent Insurance Services on Sandgate Road.

Over 15 people attended the lunch who very much appreciated the facility during a rather cold period. A full curry with soft drinks was provided along with Christmas crackers.

As we all know this is a time of year where the homeless do need support and along with other excellent facilities that exist in Folkestone it is also nice that the GMF team and others assisted within this project. The organisers also had the opportunity to chat to those that came along who gave their sincere thanks and were most appreciative of the hot, spicy food that was a tradition Himalayan meal.

Dhan Gurung the chairman commented:

“I was so pleased with the turnout and the feedback received along with all those who assisted with the Gurkha curry preparation and meal.

“I would like to say thank you to the trustees including Alka Gurung and Hema Thapa along with Ray Johnson for providing the venue facilities. In addition I am grateful for the support received from both John and Brenda Duggleby.”

Cleaning Up in Folkestone and Hythe

Recently the Gurkha Memorial Fund held its first litter picking project which was held in Folkestone Harbour on Saturday 15th December 2018. The local Nepalese community came together along with the chairman Dhan Gurung to assist with collecting discarded litter within the harbour area.

It is now envisaged that the initiative will continue working closely with Folkestone & Hythe District Council who have appreciated the assistance on a quarterly basis or perhaps every two months as necessary.

Folkestone Town Council take ownership of Gurkha Memorial Statue

The Gurkha Memorial Fund (GMF) are delighted to confirm that during a special ceremony last Saturday the 2nd June 2018 the Gurkha Memorial statue within Christchurch Gardens, Folkestone was officially handed over to Folkestone Town Council (FTC).

The Town Mayor Cllr Ann Berry was presented with a Certificate of appreciation from the Chairman Dhan Gurung where trustees and representatives from the Gurkha and Nepalese community enjoyed the occasion.

Dhan Gurung, the Chairman of the Gurkha Memorial Fund, commented:

“I am honoured that the Gurkha Memorial statue which acknowledges the Gurkhas sacrifice and their great contribution to the United Kingdom is recognised as a local government Folkestone Town Council memorial and we will continue to hold our annual memorial service on the first Sunday of each October on behalf of the country’s Gurkha community. I would also like to thank the Mayor, our trustees and supporters.”

The Town Mayor commented:

“It is always a delight to be with the Gurkha community and join members of the charity and I wish the charity future success with the various projects moving forward.”

Ray Johnson – Project  coordinator trustee commented:

“We are most grateful that FTC have taken on this special statue as custodians within its vast collection. Moving forward the GMF will continue with many projects to help and assist those both in Nepal and here in the UK. We are developing a second computer suite at school in Nepal and are further enhancing connectivity between schools in both countries to improve skills and communications for future work prospects.”

The statue was unveiled in October 2015 by Joanna Lumley to recognise the service of Gurkha soldiers, and further information is available here:

Second Annual GMF Charity Dinner

The Gurkha Memorial Fund held its second annual charity dinner evening on 27 April 2018 in support of its next phase of providing a computer technology and education project in Nepal.

The dinner included a special three-course Nepalese meal provided by the Namuna Gurkha Restaurant, along with entertainment and dancing. A raffle and auction followed and we are very grateful to all the individuals and companies that supported the event. We were delighted that we raised over £3,000 towards our second phase computer technology centre fundraising appeal to provide a fully-fitted computer centre at a secondary school at a secondary in the Rolpa district, to the eastern part of Nepal. Children within this area face an hours-long journey just to access internet facilities.

The new centre will provide computer knowledge and skills for those children who have never had access or the opportunity to use computers before. Other local schools will also use the classroom and the Gurkha Memorial Fund will support the educational needs. The site will comprise of a minimum of 15 laptops, as well as all the relevant furniture, infrastructure, support and backup to enable the project to succeed. Thereafter, the schools will be encouraged to communicate with other schools in Folkestone to share cultural experiences.

There were many dignitaries including Folkestone Town Mayor, Cllr Roger West, who thanked the fund and the trustees for their ongoing support and dedication to assist a variety of projects and, more importantly, the local Nepalese community and Gurkha regiment.

We are aiming to raise £12,000 for the project and any donations or support will be greatly appreciated, which may be made by providing cash payments c/o Ray Johnson, Church House, 136 Sandgate Road, Folkestone CT20 2BN or preferably BACS payments, via sort code 52-41-42, account number 47201290.

For further information please call Ray Johnson, UK project co-ordinator on 01303 22 11 88.