Memorial Tea and Nino’s visit

In recent years, coffee mornings in Ruislip organised by the late George and Shirley Guest, have raised thousands of pounds for Mkurnali to help with the rehabilitation and employment of homeless teenagers and young offenders in Tbilisi. Trips to Georgia organised by George inspired many people to support Mkurnali even more. This helped refurbish and equip Mkurnali’s house.

In memory of these two remarkable supporters, a group of volunteers: Liz Parry, Cicely Draper and St Gregory’s Director, Vivian Wright organised the Memorial Tea for George and Shirley on 15th October in Ruislip. The event was a great success and reunited more than 75 people, including George and Shirley’s daughter Rebecca, and Sam their grandson. A very special guest, Nino Chubabria, Director of Mkurnali came from Tbilisi to pay tribute to George and Shirley on behalf of Mkurnali’s young people.

The visit was very rewarding for Nino as she was able to speak about the transformation of Mkurnali’s shelter, the development of the car mechanic and jewellery workshops, employment of young people at ‘Berkli’s social enterprise and the legal programme. Mkurnali’s plans go further – to open a car wash, develop their poultry business and more.

One of Nino’s priorities is education support for the children of Mkurnali’s residents. At present a few families with children of school age live in the shelter and their children are falling behind significantly at school.

The success of the Memorial Tea gives us a great opportunity to contribute towards these plans. We thank everyone who made a donation, with special thanks to Greatdays travel agency which paid for the hire of the hall (£120) – the overall amount raised is £1500 and counting!

To build on George’s idea of fundraising trips, we’re planning a trip to Georgia in May 2024 and if you’re feeling inspired, do get in touch. You can find all the details on our events page.