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The British Benevolent Society of California provides financial aid and compassionate relief to British Citizens in need throughout the Western United States.

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Summer 2022 Newsletter

Board of Directors Update

Charles Cockerton

Kelly Ducourty









We are delighted to announce that the BBS Board of Directors has voted Kelly Ducourty as the new President of the BBS. After 3 years as President, Charles Cockerton will be stepping down.

Kelly began her journey with the BBS as a Director in early 2019. She has been involved with all aspects of the charity and brings a strong passion to help the charity grow and become an even stronger part of the British Community on the West Coast. As the most recent female President of the British Benevolent Society, we are looking forward to this new and exciting chapter! Find out more about Kelly here.

Charles served as President during one of the busiest periods in BBS history, when almost $200,000 in compassionate relief was shared with Brits impacted by the Coronavirus Pandemic. In addition to helping foster the legacy of providing life saving assistance to Brits in need, he successfully encouraged bringing much of our operations current while also recruiting new board members. Charles will complete his term on the Board of Directors later this year (all board members take an obligatory year off after serving consecutive 2 year terms).

Everyone at the BBS is incredibly grateful for the time, commitment and leadership that Charles has provided during these unprecedented times. Volunteering in a leadership role for a non-profit requires someone willing to sustain and build enthusiasm while also sacrificing personal time. Throughout his tenure on the Board, Charles has exemplified strong leadership with a flare for fun and fostering a strong British community throughout the Western US. We are thankful for his time with the organization and look forward to seeing him at all of our events!

If you or someone you know is interested in becoming involved with the BBS or the Board of Directors, the first step is to get in contact with us and volunteer on one of our committees.


BBS Relief & Coronavirus Assistance

The Relief Committee continues to receive a steady flow of applications requesting financial assistance from the Benevolent Society.

Examples of recent requests include individuals who face decisions of returning to the UK and abandoning their dream of becoming US Citizens and Brits facing unexpected homelessness.

One applicant had been in the US for more than 10 years and was receiving medical treatment for severe anxiety. Because of his inability to support himself, he decided that it was time to return to the UK where he would be able to secure consistent employment and income. The BBS covered the cost of his flight and provided some funds upon arrival.

The Consulate in San Francisco put us in contact with a Brit who suffered a massive stoke while visiting family in the Seattle area. She is currently not strong enough to return to the UK and needs 24 hour home health care. The BBS provided the family with funds to help pay for care and purchase medical equipment.

We received a call from Nigel, who lives on a fixed income in Southern California. Though he is insured, the out of pocket expenses associated with a trip to the hospital far exceed his monthly budget. The BBS provided a $1,500 grant to help him with the expenses.

We are very sad to share that a former relief recipient has passed away. Gerry lived in the LA area for many years and had become ill unrelated to the pandemic. After many tests, and nights in the hospital, it was determined that he would need a liver transplant. In a very sad turn of events, and after finding a donor, he contracted Covid in the hospital and passed away within 24 hours. With no family or next of kin, the BBS has offered to cover the costs of his funeral.

Our primary focus remains helping British nationals who find themselves in times of need. So that we may continue the legacy of the BBS, we need the help of the British community and rely on donations from supporters like you.


MidSummer’s Eve 2022


Thank you to all of our friends, supporters and sponsors for joining us at our 2nd annual British Benevolent Society’s MidSummer’s Eve Celebration! We had a busy, fun day and were able to raise just over $10,000! We cannot thank you enough for your support as we strive to both increase awareness of the charity and attract a diverse and active community.

We hope to do a similar event in 2023 and hope we can count on your support!

Please enjoy this video capturing all of the fun!


Upcoming Events

Monthly Happy Hour

Date: Thursday July 21

Time: 5:30

Place: Pig & Whistle 

2801 Geary Blvd, SF, CA 94118

Tickets: $10 optional donation

If you haven’t been to the Pig & Whistle, you will love this traditional English pub!

Looking forward to connecting and reconnecting with members and friends of the BBS.

The $10 fee is optional and considered a charitable donation. All of the donations that we currently receive will help us to continue to support our Covid19 Grant Program.

Register Here Today


Save The Date

Autumn In Marin &  Sonoma Bike Ride

Date: September 25, 2022

Place: Start/End Petaluma California

Join us for our 2nd BBS bike ride through the hills of Marin & Sonoma!

We hope that you will bring your family & friends to participate on one of the 3 routes planned for the day:

Tickets & Registration*

  • 10 mile bike ride: Individual $25, Family $50
  • 40/60 mile bike ride: $50
  • Non Riders: $10

*All tickets include a drink and sandwich


  • Address of the meeting place/start of ride: 75 Queens Lane Petaluma, CA 94952
  • All joining will need to complete a waiver prior to the event
  • Carpooling encouraged whenever possible

Fall in Marin & Sonoma is such a beautiful time. We look forward so sharing this time with you!


Registration will open closer to the date of the event. We will share an FAQ prior to the bike ride. Please email questions to or call 1.415.421.7195.


BBS Events Calendar

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Donate Today


As a 501(c)(3) the BBS relies on donations from supporters like you. We have had a busy summer and in addition to bringing the community together, we continue to provide support to Brits most in need. If you haven’t made a tax deductible contribution to the BBS in some time, please consider doing so today.

Donate Today



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