National Citizen Service Colchester Class of 2016

National Citizen Service Class of 2016 Colchester

A group of young students aged 16-18 graduated alongside the Gurkha Veterans that they had supported as part of their Community Action Project in the summer of 2016. The group raised money to sponsor the education of a Nepalese village child. The money was originally intended for the retired veteran Gurkhas at Abbeygate retirement home in Colchester, but they wanted to send it instead to Nepal for the children there. The Gurkhas enjoy being part of the summer National Citizen Service and have worked with many of our young people over the last few years on their NCS Community Action Projects.

 

Photos of NCS graduation and summer party; Lapubesi school in Nepal

 

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Prince Harry joins Team Rubicon UK in their latest trip to Nepal

Our Gurkha Stories colleague, Captain Umeshkumar Pun MVO, has made his 4th visit to Nepal since the earthquake one year ago with Team Rubicon UK.  Umesh is one of the team members who is rebuilding schools and houses in Nepal.  Umesh met Prince Harry who worked as an honorary member of Team Rubicon UK for a couple of days.  Please don’t forget that Nepal still needs our help to rebuild its infrastructure: http://www.teamrubiconuk.org/ (Intro by Juliana Vandegrift)

 

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Capt. Umeshkumar Pun MVO with Prince Harry last month

Building a new school:

Prince Harry joined Team Rubicon UK volunteers in Nepal to help the people of a remote village whose community had been destroyed by the 2015 earthquake.

 

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Prince Harry stayed in the country to work on the reconstruction project at the end of his recent official tour. Team Rubicon helped villagers with the ongoing temporary rebuild of their school, so the children can have adequate education facilities before the monsoon season arrives.

The charity uses the skills and expertise of military veterans to support local communities in the aftermath of natural disasters. It also gives veterans an opportunity to serve again and, in some cases, a way to adjust to the challenges of civilian life.

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Read more about their work at www.teamrubiconuk.org (words and photos credited to Team Rubicon UK)

To read more oral histories about Gurkha Veterans click here: Gurkha Stories 

 

 

Gurkha Veteran Stories

We are delighted that The Gurkha Welfare Trust is to publicise our Veterans’ oral history stories on their social media pages.  This means the stories will be shared with a wide audience and outreach and spreading the history of the Gurkha Veterans.  Our first posting had over 1600 ‘Likes’!

The full website and extract from Veterans’ stories can be viewed at www.gurkhastories.com together with our community film and school resource pack.

Ladies and Gentleman, the Gurkha Home Project at Abbeygate House, has just finished its first project call Chautara (Resting Place) here in Colchester.  The second project will be Mandir (Temple), both projects are in honour of the 200 years’ service to the British Crown and Queen’s country. (The Chautara is a stone resting place traditionally used by Nepalese travellers to rest their dokos/baskets.)

 

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Team Rubicon Lights Up The Villages in Nepal

Retired officer, Umesh Pun MVO, community champion for Gurkha Stories, has just returned from his successful third visit to Nepal to distribute aid with the charity Team Rubicon UK.  He and his colleagues distributed much-needed equipment and materials for building houses in remote villages with communities of both the very elderly and school age. As you’ll see from the photos Team Rubicon achieved so much good on this trip and it’s very rewarding to see the donations being put to such good causes.  Solar lights were given to villages, schools and houses were rebuilt and donated to communities in the Gorkha district, Takum village and Padelthok Ghau Ward4.  Team Rubicon partnered up with the Chaudari Foundation, PwC London and Seed Charity organisations to give the gift of light!

The photos of Umesh Pun MVO tell the stories…

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“Hip Hip Hooray!” – Gurkha Veterans Awarded PJM Medal today…

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293 Gurkha veterans from the London area proudly received their Pingat Jasa Malaysia Medal with dignity today in a formal ceremony which took place in Colchester, arranged by Capt. (Ret’d) Umesh Kumar Pun MVO. Umesh has made it one of his goals to apply for the PJM medal for as many veterans as he can discover who are eligible to receive it.  He applies on their behalf and then arranges a ceremony according to geographical location.  So far around 3,000 Gurkha veterans have received their PJM medals all thanks to Umesh’s dedicated work.

The PJM medal is one which was awarded by the King and Government of Malaysia in recognition of the veterans’ service during the Malayan Emergency, Second Malayan Emergency, and the Indonesia-Malaysia confrontation over 50 to 60 years ago.  Today the ceremony was was opened by a Piper who led the the visiting General of the Malaysian Army who then presided over the ceremony.  The General thanked the veterans for their brave contributions all those decades ago in an extremely difficult climate and dangerous conditions. The veterans gave a rousing three cheers to the General.

The average age of the veterans is approaching 80 years old, but the oldest veteran of all to receive his medal was retired Corporal Dal Prasad at 92 years old. He presented the General with a special present of a Nepalese scarf in gold colour as a thank you to the Government of Malaysia.

It was a truly special day and an honour to be invited as a guest.

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