PC Viv Phillips, MOD Police Community Police Officer for Brecon, is very well known amongst his colleagues and more importantly amongst his community for the efforts he makes in ensuring that the Nepalese members of his community are looked after.
Viv has taken time to get to know his community and learn about their cultures, then educate others accordingly.
Local Dyfed-Powys Police Chief Inspector Tavener was invited to the Dashain celebrations at the Sangam Club at Dering Lines. Here’s what he had to say:
“I have learned a lot about the Gurkha Company (Mandalay) Army
Community and was honoured to be invited to the Dashain celebrations at the Sangam Club at Dering Lines.
Dashain is the most important festival to the Nepalese and involves 15 days of celebration and commemorates a great victory of the Gods over wicked demons.
After receiving the blessing of goddess Durga, people are ready to work and acquire virtue, power and wealth. Dashain thus is not only the longest festival but also the most anticipated one among all the festivals of Nepal. My hosts told me that during this time they all receive new Army uniforms to enter the new period properly equipped. A lot of the community will gamble during this period as part of the celebrations.
Staff at the High School told me that they suspend tests during Dashain now that they fully understand the meaning and demands of this festival.
My hosts made it very clear that providing for their families and being part of the community is key. The Gurkha Company has suffered redundancies as part of the austerity measures. I was frequently asked about job opportunities within the Police and I will be certainly ensuring any external job opportunities are positively marketed in this community. It would be a positive step to see a Nepalese PCSO or Special Constable as the community is now estimated at 600 plus!”