GHS is fortunate to have many opportunities to showcase our culture at the Centre, as well as externally in the community. These include annual events such as the Preston Mela, Health Mela, as well as numerous cultural events such as Republic Day and Independence Day that occur in the year. This brings awareness to others outside the community and helps with donations to the Society. Importantly, it allows us to widen the awareness of our Indian culture.
Raas Garba Competition
Raas-Garba are traditional folk dances which originates from the state of Gujarat, India. Garba (clap dance) is traditionally performed during the festival of Navratri for nine auspicious nights to worship the divine Goddess Ambika in all her forms. Garba is performed in a circle, as a symbol of the Hindu view of time. Dandiya Raas is said to have transcended from Lord Krishna, who performed Raas with his Gopis in the holy ancient town of Vrindavan in India. Usually performed with two wooden sticks (dandiya) alongside, structured movements and formations.
The society has always taken part in the Raas-Garba Competitions that take place annually against other organisations. Historically, costumes have been handmade by members of the community or the dance lead. The society have since taken ownership by sourcing beautiful costumes/jewellery manufactured and shipped from India for participants to wear. 6 trophies are available for organisations to competitively compete for (Winner/Runner Up for Raas, Garba and Costumes) with funding from the Hindu Council of the North (HCN).
Cultural Shows: Republic Day and Independence Day
A number of shows are held at the society, the main two being India’s Independence Day and Republic Day. Independence day is marked as a national holiday in India, celebrating India’s independence from the British Raj on 15th August 1947. India’s Republic Day is marked nationally to commemorate the date on which the Constitution of India came into effect on 26th January 1950. Both young and old partake in performances such as singing, dancing, drama and comedy. The local platform has allowed performers to build confidence and enthusiasm to represent the Gujarat Hindu Society in the wider community and larger events. The Gujarat Hindu Society pleasurably invites high ranking dignitaries from the community and other communities to experience the talent showcased at the society.