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SSTW reaches out to the homeless

In the month of February, the youth of SSTW have held a series of soup kitchens and donated clothing to the homeless as part of a humanitarian project. The food was prepared at the temple kitchen before being transported to Holborn, where a range of stalls was set up. With the help of donors such as Tesco, Bhavna Sweet Mart, Lee Baron Commercial Property Agents, Euroken, Carphone Warehouse, Falguni Cakes, St. Helens Supermarket and the temple community, we distributed more than 1200 items of winter clothing, 900 hot food packages, 450 goodie bags containing - water, biscuits, soft drink, cake, fruit and sandwiches. Each week we had more than 35 volunteers ranging from the committee seniors, the youth and the wider temple community partaking in various sevas such as cooking, packaging and distributing. A special thanks goes out to Govindbhai of Amazing Tiles who guided us throughout the project.

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Media coverage: Kilburn TimesDivya Bhaskar

Charity Fundraising Events

In the last ten years, Shree Swaminarayan Temple Willesden Academy has raised a considerable amount of money for UK charities, Bhuj Temple and natural disasters.

The list shows the events the youth were involved in and how much money was raised:

  •  Raised £8,000 for the Bhuj Earthquake appeal by street collection, sponsored pradikshna, fasting, silence and the youth also donated their pocket money.
  • Sponsored walk for Bhuj Temple from Hyde Park to Willesden Temple, where over 200 people including Bhuj santos, committee members and many elder satsangi’s from the temple attended and raised £14,000.
  • Sponsored Janmangal Namavali was held on 30th November 2003 to raise money for Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital and raised over £5,000.
  • Sponsored walk was held from Harrow Temple to Willesden Temple to raise money for the Tsunami Relief Appeal on Sunday 30th January 2005. All UK temples attended this event and Shree Swaminarayan Temple Willesden raised approximately £40,000.
  • 28 young ladies from SSTW Academy took part in Race for Life, a women only race organised to raise money for Cancer Research UK in 2006. They raised over £2,500.
  • 30 young men from Shree Swaminarayan Temple Willesden Academy took part in the London Bikeathon to raise money and awareness for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research in 2011 and raised over £1,000.
  • 40 guys and 10 girls from Shree Swaminarayan Temple Willesden Academy took part in the sponsored charity bike ride in the centre of London as team “SSTWillesden” to raise money and awareness for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research in 2012 and raised over £4,000.

Queens Diamond Jubilee Celebrations

Date: Tuesday 6th June

Shree Swaminarayan Temple Willesden hosted a BBQ in celebration of HM Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee. The bunting was up, the rain came pouring down, but that did not dampen the evening. The event was attended by many guests including local councillors, families from the local neighbourhood and members of the community. The national anthem was sung followed by playing the Queens diamond jubilee message.

Guests were treated to a traditional lazium and band performance followed by a thoroughly entertaining dhol show performance by the Mandir youth. The children also had great fun on the bouncy castle! The BBQ dinner was enjoyed by all together with cakes and ice cream. The evening ended with a raffle draw, with the money raised going to charity.

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GOSH Charity Walk

Date: Sunday 9th June 2013

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Shree Swaminarayan Temple, Willesden helped organise a special “Community Weekend” as part of their 25th anniversary celebrations. As well as the spiritual and cultural festivities, we also wanted to ensure the temple can do as much as possible for the community and those most in need of support.

On Saturday 8th June, a group of volunteers from the temple joined up with an organisation called “Groundwork” to help clean up a woodland area near Grand Union Canal. A site that was once filled rubbish and was beginning to pollute the surrounding wildlife habitats – was cleaned up entirely. Additionally, a dhol (Indian drum) workshop took place at a local community centre where children playing the steelpans were able to get tips from and practice with some of the temple’s musicians.

On Sunday 9th June, a charity walk was held in aid of Great Ormond Street Hospital. Starting from Shree Kutch Satsang Swaminarayan Temple – Kenton, participants came in their masses to walk all the way through to Willesden Temple. With the dedicated assistance of volunteers from both temples, the walk went as smoothly as you could hope for. Local councillors, representatives from both temples and Great Ormond Street helped kick things off with huge fanfare. Around 450-500 people were estimated to have taken part. The great day was capped off with the announcement that around £25,000 had been raised. A truly wonderful achievement.
A special thank you to all volunteers, participants and donors who supported this weekend.

Click here to view pictures of the event!