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Donal’s Nepali Dinner

By Donal Gallagher

NFN Fundraising Meal at Nepali or Indian Restaurant

You don't have to go very far these days to trip over an Indian restaurant, often serving delicious, fresh food. Though not as numerous, Nepalese restaurants can also be found in most major towns, and I was aware there was a Nepalese restaurant close to me, owing to the Gurkha presence in the army barracks nearby.

As part of my efforts to raise funds for the 2016 New Futures Nepal Annupurna trek, I decided to approach the restaurant to see if they'd be interested in hosting a fundraising meal. I met with the manager and it became clear quickly that not only would he and the team at the restaurant be supportive, but that they were used to holding such events for other charities. In this instance though, this charity resonated particularly with the venue with it benefitting Nepal and India.

It paid to go prepared with some fundamental information about New Futures Nepal; I had a copy of the recent annual report and could show the manager the website on my iPad. Practically speaking, much of the effort is taken on by the restaurant. We agreed a set menu at a price which covered its costs as well as a built in an element that would then benefit New Futures Nepal. For example, I would charge everyone attending £20 with the restaurant charging £10 per head, so New Futures Nepal benefitting to the tune of £10 for everyone attending. Drinks would be purchased separately with no benefit to New Futures Nepal.

The main onus on me was to get people there. I'd did this primarily through personal invitations although I was surprised that I'd got some people coming along as a result of me posting the evening as an event on Facebook for my friends. I also got some simple flyers printed and the restaurant put these up to promote the event to its regular customers. Unexpectedly, the restaurant manager also put me in touch with the Secretary of the local Nepali cultural group, which he thought would be interested to hear about and potentially support New Futures Nepal.

The night itself was a great success with funds boosted by a raffle to which friends who attended were happy to contribute prizes. So for a bit of pluck, some clear information about the charity and a willingness to ask friends to help, this effort can be converted in to a great and replicable fundraising occasion.

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