The Goan Welfare Society

Goan Welfare Society

Goan Welfare Society

The Goan Welfare Society (GWS) was founded in March 1983 to provide limited assistance to Goans living in the UK. The responsibility for the Charity was handed over to the Goan Association (UK) when the original Trustees had passed away and in October 2004, it was re-constituted with Trustees appointed by the Board of Directors. However, as required by the Charity Commission, the Charity operates as an autonomous body with its own membership and raising its own funds. The present Trustees are: Paul De Mendonça, Norma Menezes-Rahim, Alfred Rebello, Raymond Lobo and Flavio Gracias.

Becoming a member of GWS could not be simpler – just complete the application form and a single “one-off” subscription of £1.00. Anyone is welcome to join the Charity – it would be an achievement if we could reach a target of hundred members.

Over the past few years, the welfare work has shown a considerable demand with the numbers of Goans increasing and also with the ageing community needing more assistance. This has put pressure on the Charity because of a lack of funds and also more importantly because more volunteers are desperately needed – as the saying goes “the harvest is big but the labourers are few”.

In 2010, GWS with support from members of the Goan Community repatriated the body of a fellow Goan (who died unexpectedly) to his family in Goa for burial.

In 2011, GWS raised funds to send a Goan lady (who suffered a stroke) back to her family in Mumbai.

the saying goes “the harvest is big but the labourers are few”.

Thanks to the generosity from our many donors, the above are some great examples of how the GWS stepped in to provide much needed assistance for members of the Community. We have been involved in other welfare work such as prison visits and helping families with domestic problems. The work can only continue if we receive financial support from the community. Donations should be sent to:

In 2013, GWS (with the support of fellow organisations) was able to repatriate the body of another fellow Goan to his family in Verna, Goa. He left behind a wife and two small children in Goa and they were able to say a final farewell to their loved one before burial.

The Goan Welfare Society, “The Firs” 17 Firs Drive, Cranford, Middlesex, TW5 9TA.

SO…..CAN YOU HELP US?

We are starting a fund-raising drive to encourage Goans to:

  • Become Members – for £1 subscription
  • Give one-off donations   
  • Join the “planned giving” scheme
  • Remember GWS on special occasions – e.g. anniversaries
  • Consider leaving a legacy in your will

Help us to help those less fortunate within your community.

Please Download the attached PDF by clicking the link below to donate

GWS Planned Giving Form( 3 November 2013)


ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING – 2015

TRUSTEES REPORT

Introduction

The Goan Welfare Society (GWS) was founded in March 1983, by three caring Goans, to provide limited assistance to Goans living in the UK. In time, two of the Trustees passed away and the responsibility for the Charity was handed over to the Goan Association (UK) in October 2004. It was re-constituted with Trustees appointed by the Board of Directors. However, as required by the Charity Commission, the Charity operates as an autonomous body with its own membership and raising its own funds. The present Trustees are: Paul De Mendonça, Norma Menezes-Rahim, Alfred Rebello, Bosco Saldanha and Flavio Gracias (Chair)

Sadly, Cornelius Monteiro, a past trustee of the Charity, passed away after a short period of   ill-health. Raymond Lobo stepped down as a Trustee at the last AGM in 2014 and was replaced by Bosco Saldanha, who has been helping the work of the charity. Flavio Gracias has continued a Chair of the Trustees having been appointed to this position in 2013.

Fund-raising Efforts

During 2014, the year under review, we had several fund-raising initiatives, two of which were attributed to the repatriation of two bodies to their loved ones in Goa. Both initiative secured sufficient to defray the cost and with the second repatriation, we worked closely with the Goan Community Association (Ealing). We have also negotiated a fixed fee of £2,100, for straightforward repatriations to Goa and this fee will apply to all future repatriations. We continue to urge members of the community to take out insurance policies to cover the cost of the repatriation and we hope that this message will get through to the members of the community at large.

Regrettably, a fund-raising function, organised by the Goan Association (UK) in August 2014 at Harrow Leisure Centre proved to be most unsuccessful and made a loss of nearly £3,800 due to poor attendance at the event. Fortunately, the Charity is not liable for this loss.

Review of activities

Apart from the repatriation of bodies, over the last year we were providing care to two sisters who were both single and they have since passed away. Flavio Gracias, as the Executor named in their wills, was responsible for arranging their funerals and is now managing the estate with the help of a solicitor. Other work during the year include:

i. Providing advice where intervention by the Social Services is required.

ii. Helping cases with their medical needs where required.

iii. Keeping in touch with one person who is in a home in Hounslow after having recovered from TB in the brain.

In many of our cases, we work closely with the Pilar Fathers and the Goan Community Association (Ealing).

Future Plans

1. Membership

Regretfully, we have not achieved our goal to increase our membership to 100 by the end of 2014 and this objective will continue to be pursued in the next few years. At present we xx members and we will try to increase this figure by a modest 10% in 2015.

2. Planned Giving

Our aim to double the number donors in our planned giving scheme continues undaunted and at present, the annual amount under the scheme is £600.00

3. Raising awareness

We have made strenuous efforts to increase awareness of the charity and this action will carry on in the foreseeable future so that we become the charity of choice for birthdays, anniversaries, funerals, etc.