The Karate Union of Great Britain Charity Appeal
The Karate Union of Great Britain - the KUGB - first raised funds for charity as an organisation in 1987, at the height of the famine in Ethiopia. Inspired by the example of Bob Geldof and Band Aid, KUGB members suggested that perhaps we could help more significantly by pooling our energies. As a result, the KUGB Executive offered to co-ordinate fundraising amongst clubs for that year, and this process has continued ever since, with the KUGB lending support to a wide range of needy causes.
The following is a brief resume of our efforts to date:
1987 The Chad Appeal
Our first appeal was to help one of the world's poorest countries, Chad, and we raised enough to buy them a four wheel drive vehicle for use as an ambulance in remote areas.
1988 The Betty Langholm Memorial Appeal
Our most successful appeal to date and a reflection of the great affection and esteem that was held for Betty, who, for many years, was the Licencing Officer of the KUGB. With the funds raised we were able to purchase a complete computerised record system for the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children.
1989 Age Concern
The funds raised were re-distributed to be used in local Age Concern Centres and were gratefully received at a time of particularly severe winter weather conditions.
1990 British Sports Association for the Disabled
A basic principal of karate is that it develops the potential of each individual according to their abilities - and this is, no doubt, a principal that is shared with the BSAD.
1991 Dreams Come True
This is a charity that attempts to give terminally ill children their Dream of a Lifetime.
1992 Action Research Multiple Sclerosis
One of our members is an MS sufferer. MS can have a damaging effect on the nervous system on which we depend for our motor-skills, and on which karate training can be so beneficial.
1993 International Spinal Research Trust
Support for this charity was requested by one of our Dan grades who became dependant on a wheelchair through spinal injuries sustained in a car accident. Our funds helped research into repairs to the spinal cord.
1994 VSO and Task Force Albania
Members of the KUGB have given support over the years to Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) by attending it's annual Karate Championships in Wolverhampton as organisers, officials, competitors and spectators.
This year we further supported VSO by paying for all costs to run the championship, and therefore all the income was pure profit (which the Government matches approximately threefold). We also purchased an Infant Ventilator for Albania, (Europe's poorest country). The Ventilator has saved many lives from the first day it was installed.
1995 Foundation for the Study of Infant Death
A couple, both KUGB Dan Grades and Officials, sadly lost their child to what is generally known as a 'Cot death'. We hope our fundraising efforts helped prevent other such tragedies.
Another KUGB member's son suffered from Cerebral Palsy. He was very bright but found communication and mobility difficult.
Scope supports the Peto Assessment Centre, which specialises in a process that is known as Conductive Education which is designed to help overcome such problems and encourage independence and quality of life.
1997 The Laura Crane Trust
In May 1996, one of our members, Laura Crane, died at the age of 17 from a rare form of cancer.
The funds donated by the KUGB helped to kick-start the trust, which is now fully established with its own offices and staff.
1998 - 2000 CRY and the Clarke Lister Appeal
In 1998, the KUGB sadly lost one of its most promising young squad members, Tony Francis as a result of a genetic heart condition; Tony was 27 years old.
We also lost one of our 10 year old members, Clarke Lister: Clarke died of a brain haemorrhage only days after passing his 4th Kyu with Sensei Sherry.
Both had pre-existing conditions, which, had they been identified early, may have been treatable.
The members agreed to support a charity called CRY - Cardiac Risk in the Young, which facilitates research in these areas.
2001 - 2002 The Motor Neurone Disease Association
Support for this particular Charity was requested by Mr Tara Sonu Mana of Kendal Karate Club.
Motor Neurone Disease (MND) has greatly affected his family over the last few years and deprived him of a brother and a sister.
In Tara's case, the disease is hereditary, which will obviously be a constant source of stress to him and his relatives.
MND is the name given to a group of related diseases affecting the motor neurones in the brain and spinal column. It is a rapidly progressive and fatal disease that can affect any adult at any time.
MND leaves people unable to walk, talk or feed themselves, but the intellect and senses remain unaffected. Those with MND still think and feel as normal, but their muscles will not work - a tragic scenario which is in such sad contrast to the benefits of improved co-ordination and control enjoyed by Karateka.
Monies raised are being used to help fund research in the hope of finding a cure for this terrible disease.
2003 The National Children's Orthopaedic Centre
It is the custom for a charity to be suggested by our members and support for this particular charity was requested by Ian MacLaren of Huby Karate Club.
Ian witnessed the work of the centre whist undergoing hip surgery and felt that the charity was a worthy one that will greatly benefit the community but which will also have a special meaning for Karateka, where the aim is to be active and mobile throughout the whole of life.
2004 - 2005 Combat Stress
Combat Stress helps members of the armed forces and their families who have suffered severe stress and trauma as a result of their experiences whilst on active duty.
Support was requested by one of our members from Wales, who through their support, was able to rebuild his life away from feelings of constant terror and despair.
2006 - 2010 Asthma UK and CRY
The KUGB decided to continue support for both Asthma UK and CRY over this period.
Asthma UK is a charity which funds research in to this debilitating condition which affects many children. This has been chosen again at the request of one of our members who has herself suffered from asthma since childhood.
CRY - Cardiac Risk in the Young - is a charity which facilitates research into heart conditions that especially affect young people and has affected the lives of members of the KUGB and their families.
Details of the current KUGB Charity Appeal can be found by clicking here.
Much fundraising is also done locally and nationally by KUGB clubs in their own right, and this, coupled with our Charity Appeals, means that KUGB members provide a terrific amount of assistance to charity. It is a compliment to them that they are so willing to give their time and energy in support of others that are less fortunate.
Well done and a big thank you to them all, their friends, and supporters!
The total funds raised to date are around £300,000. Thank you to Lloyds Bank, Prenton, Wirral who provide Free Banking Services for our Appeals
The KUGB Charity Appeal is a registered Charity. No.1001131