Saturday, January 12, 2008

GWS CHRISTMAS 1999



GWS X'MAS 1999

SECRETARY'S REPORT























This year, as the Goan Welfare Society (GWS) is successfully completing a momentous decade of existence in Kuwait, it is with pride to draw the attention of all Goans that it has has strived constantly to earn for itself and its members abundant credence in bolstering in every sphere of social service and help towards needy Goans and countrymen. GWS has strongly stood to the challenges and have strived for the betterment of the Goan community. And the saga of success continuous unabated. 1999 saw GWS celebrated with style the 5th Goa Day event - a much cherished event for the Goan community in Kuwait to display unity among Goans. It was attended by over 2000 during the day long programme comprising of Goan cultural, food, games of skill, educational, and talent contests. The Goa Day '99 had the participation of all Goan clubs in Kuwait and this was specially witnessed at the lighting of the traditional lamp for the opening ceremony, serenaded by the visiting Goan troupe, Augustinho da Cruz and his troupe, which was flown direct from Goa - courtesy of Indian Airlines. GWS participation in the social, cultural and economic programmes and forums organized by the Embassy of India, Indian Arts Circle (of which GWS is a member), the Association of Indian Professionals (AIP), the visiting Indian delegations, and others further enhances our commitment of solidarity among the Indian expatriates in Kuwait. On the call by H.E. The Ambassador of India, Rs. 98,000/- were raised towards the Indian Army Welfare Fund for the Kargil cause in the name of the Goan community - thanks to the individuals and the clubs/associations for their contribution. GWS actively participated in the Diwalli Programme in November '98 organized by the Embassy of India at the IAC Auditorium, and the Republic Day celeberations at the Indian Embassy. The GWS X'mas Tree '98 function was a grand success. GWS was invited by H.E. the Ambassador of India to Kuwait for a Christmas Party hosted for prominent Indians. We
contributed towards the Christmas illumination of the Embassy building and the Auditorium repairs and renovation works . A warm welcome was accorded to Fr. Hilary Fernandes of Pilar Society by GWS and helped him to raise funds for charity. He was honoured and presented with a Memento. GWS offered full support and cooperation for the canonization process of Vernerable Fr. Agnel D'Souza. GWS makes it a point to look homeward, and spare a thought for those needy and less fortunate bretherns who are unfortunately rendered homeless. Over the past year, we have, in our small way, rendered assistance to: Home for the Aged (Albergue)-Loutolim, Associacoa Pao de Sto. Antonio-Curtorim, Inmates of Deao's Home-Quepem, Old Age Home-Quepem (M.C. Sisters), Patrocial Chapel-Benaulim, Asylum of Margao
(Provedoria), Navajyothi Rehabilitation Centre-Nuvem, Clergy Home (Hospicio do Clero)-Margao, Missionaries of Charity (Asilo)-Panaji, Fr. Agnel Trust, among others. GWS offered full support to Don Bosco Mission to establish an unique institute in Kuwait. In times of need, GWS has been always on the forefront, in the interest of the Goans. The matter for compensation for the accident victim case in Kuwait, Mrs. Maria Ninette Fernandes of Nuvem, Verna, Salcette, was vigorously followed-up since December '96, with the assistance and cooperation of the Indian Embassy , and GWS is pleased to inform that it has been favourably settled by the Courts of Kuwait and a sum of KD. 16000/- was granted. GWS donated Rs. 10,000/- towards Mrs. Anita Noronha's kidney transplant operation and we are pleased to inform that the operation has been a success. Time and again, GWS has been committed itself to look into the grieviences of the Goan destitues. GWS has very recently assisted in the repatriation of two Goan destitute housemaids, Ms. Martha Barretto hailing from Canacona and Ms. Simona Alemos hailing from Ilha de Rachol, Salcette, through the good offices of the Indian Embassy. Both were flown by Indian Airlines direct to Goa and airfares borne soley by GWS. We have expressed our interest to the Indian Mission looking after the interest of the runaway Indian maids, within our means, to fly out the six Goan maids - four Christians, one Hindu and one
Muslim - presently at the Safe House, and re-unite them with them family, hopefully, before the X'mas Day! At the request of the Indian Embassy, GWS rendered help to a Goan maid to transport her left baggage on KWI/GOI flight. With the help of our benefactor, Mr. Tony Figuerado, it was handed over to her in Goa. The top Goan artiste, Lorna, who visited Kuwait for a Konkani drama was honoured by GWS and presented with a Memento. It has been a proud privilege to make a headway in the local sports activities of the expatriate Indians. GWS responded to the call of Kuwait Indian Football Federation (KIFF) to sponsor the J.P. D'Mello Memorial Rolling Trophy (KIFF Super League) in recognition of his services towards the promotion of football in India and Kuwait. GWS has also sponsored the "Kuwaitkar Team" who will participate with other Gulf, North America and African Football Team for the first ever Goan Soccer 2000 World Cup Tournament to be held between 9th - 22nd January 2000, conducted under the auspices of Goa Football Association (GFA) in Goa. The top ranking Goan students at the 1998-99 Goa Board's Secondary School Certificate Examinations (SSCE) were honoured at a recently held Lions Club function in Curtorim. A sum of Rs. 5000/- each to the top Goan girl, Neelam R. Prabhugoanker of M&N English High School - Margao and to the top Goan boy Vankatesk Kolvalker of Mustifund High School - Panaji were handed over by the chief guest, Mr. Francisco Sardinha, Hon. Minister of Health in the presence of GWS Treasurer, Mr. Joaquim Sardinha. The annual scholarship awards are sponsored by Mr. & Mrs. Sam Alphonso, patron member of GWS. The 1999
annual GWS academic scholarship awards for students studying in Kuwait's Indian Schools affiliated to the CBSE Board, New Delhi has been extended to Std. IXth, Xth, XIth and XIIth. The receipients of the GWS Scholarship awards for 1999 are: Miss Christabelle Pinto (Std. IX), and Miss Myra Antao (Std. IX), Miss Chantelle Marise Miranda (Std. X), Master Noel Micheal D'Souza (Std. X), Olinda D'Mello (Std. XI - Commerce), Master Wilson Ignatius Gonsalves (Std. XI - Science), Master Osborn Gomes (Stx. XII -
Science), and Miss Michelle D'Souza (Std. XII - Commerce). Our hearty congratulations to these young Goans who make us feel proud. GWS thank in a very special way, Mr. & Mrs. Sam Alphonso for their kind sponsorship of these academic awards. Over the past years, GWS has taken special interest in seeking jobs for Goans by recommending suitable candidates to the employers. Service benefits for those Goans not recalled and which was at stake has also been looked into. The war compensation benefits were also followed. The May Queen '99 Ball was held at the Messilah Beach Hotel-Habiba Ballroom on 6th May 1999 and hailed as a success. Ms. Analy Furtado was crowned the May Queen. Handsome prizes, air-tickets and
electronic goods, prize coupons, etc. were donated by Kuwait's top business houses and well wishers in Kuwait. The Educational Seminar, organized by GWS, at the Carlton Hotel in April '99 saw eminent and illustrious educationists, doctors and high profile professionals from IT, Airlines, Tourism, Advertising, and Administrative cadres in Kuwait conveyed the indepth vocational guidance to the students of the Indian schools. A large number of students, parents, school administrators and attended and H.E. The Ambassador inaugurated the seminar. Plans are in the offing to establish and operate a medical facility in Goa. The idea has been mooted in coordination with the Goan football clubs in Kuwait and prominent Goans in the Gulf region. Towards this end, efforts are being made to implement this much cherished dream through the cooperation of Goan doctors, medical technologists, nurses and the medical faculty in Kuwait with close liaison with medical professions and the concerned authorities in Goa. GWS looks forward to make this dream a reality with the cooperation of all. GWS Membership have recorded a upsurge in the last two years and continues in the trend currently at the same pace. Issues of vital interest to the Goan community in Kuwait and back home have been taken at official levels with the Governor of Goa, the Chief Minister, honourable members of Goa's Legislative Assembly, the Speaker of Goa, and educational/social institutions to redress the genuine grieviences. The issue of reservations of seats for NRI Goan students in medical and professional colleges in Goa has been continuously been looked into. A joint delegation comprising of GWS and the Presidents of Goan clubs/associations recently met with the Indian Airlines management in Kuwait and we are pleased to announce the commencement of the Kuwait-Goa direct flight in November '99. We are also pleased to announce a special additional direct flight by Indian Airlines on Wednesday 22nd December 1999 at 0130 hours. Issues of mutual interest concerning ticket reservations, cargo, baggage allowances and inflight services were raised and deleberated. Indian Airlines has been very receptive to the suggestions put forth by the delegations. As we cross the threshold of a new century and open the doors to the new Millenium,
let's dedicate ourselves to continue to foster the unity, the rich Goan culture, traditions and heritage we have been bestowed on! Ask not what GWS can do for you but ask what you can do for GWS in the interest of Goa and Goans.

Merry X'mas and Best Wishes for the year 2000 to all our Members and well-wishers.


Gaspar Almeida
General Secretary - Goan Welfare Society
(GWS) - Kuwait