The Mandalorian Mercs Costume Club prides itself on the dedication of its members, and we have decided to recognize those members that work the hardest to put their best foot forward each month.  This month the Mandalorian Mercs Costume Club would like to recognize the members of Vok’Chi Clan as Clan of the Month for July! These members make up one, out of many, of the MMCC’s amazing clans but that did not stop them from being a shining example to all during these trying times.

Vok’Chi Clan is one of our many amazing clans in the European Region. The clan plays host to all the members in the United Kingdom, covering England, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. Vok’Chi is the second oldest clan in the MMCC, counting up to about twelve and a half years. Their clan has been very lucky to play host to two Star Wars Celebration London events. The clan has experienced some ups and downs with membership, just as most clans do, but they are steadily growing again. They are currently seeing a resurgence of their older members who were retired; who are seeking to come back to the clan.

Despite the rising and falling numbers of membership, Vok’Chi Clan was able to accumulate an impressive 244 charity hours last year. The clan has a great relationship with both event coordinators and other costume groups through their favorite annual events. But it is not just the trooping aspect that the clan enjoys, it is the time they get to spend together, as a family, due to being so far apart. They come together to eat, drink, and share a meal, in other words to live by their clan name which translates to “To enjoy a pint or close-knit group.” They try to also keep their official and unofficial members active by encouraging activity on the forums where all are welcome! There is always a constant stream of WIPs, updates, and even daily discussions. But this is not the only way they bring the clan together; the clan tries to put on a social event after a troop is over, to ensure that strong bonds can be formed.

The best way to understand these bonds is through the leader who brings the clan together through the tough or easy times. We sat down with the Alor’ad of Vok’Chi, Hik’aari, to hear more about the clan. Hik’aari is proud and happy to be the Alor’ad of an amazing old clan, though he could only sum it up with one quote that came up from the end of a troop almost exactly 1 year ago:

“Today is possibly the proudest I have ever been as an Alor’ad. Every single member today went beyond every expectation, anything needed doing and it was just done. Everyone looked after each other, especially in the heat, and the public were entertained from opening to close. Kids adored trying on the Armor we had, and the props we bought. Days like today are what make all of the time, effort, and dedication to a role worthwhile.”

The quote explains what a clan is all about, that sense of family that bonds over the love of something we can all rally behind, our love of Star Wars and doing good for our community. With the current COVID-19 situation we all face world-wide, Vok’Chi Clan has had a tough time, but they are making sure that their members are staying safe. It is the most important thing they can do now, but the recently relaxed trooping guidelines/requirements have eased their pressure a little bit more. As we are stuck at home, Vok’Chi Clan has organized game nights for members to join in on. Most importantly they were able to host the very first Virtual European Armor Party that had an amazing turn out of recruits and official members. Some of the clan members were also instrumental in the creation and hosting of MercsConline as well. The club cannot be prouder of Vok’Chi Clan for helping make our first online event memorable.

Vok’Chi Clan members have been focusing on what they can do to their armor through improvements or fixes in preparation for when things can go back to normal, hopefully soon. For now, they can only keep motivation at a high and look forward to seeing each other again. They also cannot wait to keep working with the influx of new foundlings since Disney+ had dropped in the region. Hik’aari assures us that he does not see that influx dying down soon and states that the clan has a goal set on getting those foundlings approved into the MMCC. They are eager to get them ready for their first troop and to see the fresh new faces join the clan.

If you are a foundling looking for Vok’Chi Clan, just be aware that they will do their best to take care of you and help guide you to approval. We are proud of Vok’Chi Clan for embracing what it is to be a Mandalorian Merc; they are amazing example to us all and they will continue to live up to it. Congratulations Vok’Chi Clan for being Clan of the Month for July! OYA!