The latest letter, in appreciation of a grant from the Provincial Grand Master's Fund, comes from June Perkin BEM, Founder and Chairperson of the Growing Zone Group, Kippax.
She writes: "I would like to express our sincere thanks for your very kind grant. This wonderful donation will allow us to replace equipment which we have wanted for a long time but have not been able to afford. As we are now extending our community service to the nursing and care homes in our area, these items are priceless to us and will come in very handy."
"We are very grateful for this grant, as we appreciate the need of other groups and their necessity of financial assistance during this dreadful Covid situation. The help and support Masonic charities deliver across the world is awesome and for you to think we are worthy of helping means a great deal to us."
This latest newsletter gives details of grants awarded during January to charities and organisations across the Province. Its aim is to ensure that all Brethren and their families within Yorkshire, West Riding are aware of the work that WRMCL is doing to support those within our communities. Since the previous update, the Provincial Grand Master’s Fund has made grants, totalling nearly £15,000, to seven community organisations, where it is hoped there will be the biggest impact in terms of community benefit: Sensory World is a Community Interest Company, incorporating a multi-sensory play centre and cafe in Dewsbury. The play centre is open to babies, children and adults and includes special facilities for those with a sensory impairment. All the available forms of sensory communication are used, in innovative and unusual ways, to inspire and engage children with Asperger syndrome or other autism spectrum disorders.
The grant of £2,000 will be used to fit a replacement floor-covering with safety vinyl; providing easier access to those with limited mobility. Outside activity boards will be purchased, to stimulate both children and adults; sponsored by St John’s Lodge No 827, Dewsbury. The Welcome Centre (Huddersfield) is one of the largest food banks in the north of England, giving out enough food annually to provide over 280,000 meals to people in crisis. Clients are also offered advocacy, guidance and support to help them address any underlying or ongoing issues which prevent them getting back on their feet.
During the pandemic, the number of applications for help has increased dramatically. As well as food packs, clients have access to toiletry, home-starter and bedding packs and demand means these are going out at a rate of 120 per month. A grant of £2,000 will enable the purchase of future supplies; sponsored by Beaumont Lodge No 2035, Kirkburton. Calder Valley Search & Rescue Team and Holme Valley Mountain Rescue Team have each been granted £2,500. The coronavirus pandemic means the Teams are now using a great deal of additional PPE, both for themselves and for casualties. On completion of a rescue the team members have to thoroughly clean-down and sanitise the inside of vehicles and equipment, all adding financial cost. The grants will be used to purchase and replace; fuel, PPE kit, First Aid supplies and equipment used in rescues; sponsored by De Warren Lodge No 1302, Halifax and Holme Valley Lodge No 652, Holmfirth. Woodhead Mountain Rescue Team - The team were granted £2,000 last month and in view of the ongoing additional expenditure, as a result of the pandemic, an additional £500 has been awarded. The Growing Zone, is a community garden project in Kippax, a village near Leeds; created from five derelict allotments to bring together everyone, with or without disabilities, visual impairment and learning needs, in an environment that is safe. Where they can learn from each other, build up their confidence, mix with other people from the community, be taught about the land, how to grow vegetables, flowers and fruit etc. and be out in the fresh air having fun and building friendships.
Whilst closed due to the current COVID-19 situation, the grant of £392 will purchase propagators, polypropylene shelving units and an Arbus heavy duty potting table; sponsored by Aurora Lodge No 4047, Leeds. Roundabout is South Yorkshire’s local youth housing charity providing shelter, support and life skills to young people aged 16-24 who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. With the strategic aim of ending youth homelessness in South Yorkshire, they support over 250 young people living in accommodation every day; either provided by or supported by the charity.
A Homeless Prevention Service is for anyone in need of support and advice, whilst a street outreach team, called Rapid Rehousing, consists of dedicated workers who actively go out into the community, identifying homeless young people in need of intensive support. The need for this service has increased recently, leading to the appointment of an additional part-time appointment in the Rapid Rehousing team. The grant of £5,000 will cover the cost of this position for a period of 4 months; sponsored by Royal Brunswick Lodge No 296, Sheffield. Letters of Appreciation Whilst not seeking gratitude from the recipients of grants from the PGM’s Fund, it is always pleasing to know that the charitable donations made by West Riding Freemasons and their families, are appreciated. Letters of appreciation have been received from some of the recent recipients and extracts from a couple are shown below: ‘I am writing on behalf of Huddersfield & District University of the Third Age to thank West Riding Masonic Charities Ltd for the very generous donation of £1,000. The money will be used to fund Zoom licences for on-line classes until we are able to resume our usual face to face activities. I would like to take this opportunity to extend the seasons greetings and my very best wishes to your organisation in the coming year.’ Dr Dallas Cliff – Chairman ‘I would like to formally express our appreciation of your generous donation. Would you please pass on our thanks to all of your colleagues and a particular thank you to Rectitude Lodge. I, personally, have long been aware of the great work that you do in the Community, supporting many projects across the County. Many thanks for your donation; rest assured it will be put to good use as Musica Shelley reopens and we can resume our activities.’ Trevor Sutton And finally . . . . .
PGM Fund Major Grant Applications 2021
Major grants can be applied for throughout the year and are usually considered by the PGM’s Fund Committee annually, at their March meeting and may be awarded for either capital or revenue expenditure. Brethren will recall these applications are invited where the award will have a significant impact upon the proposed beneficiary. Brethren, please note the deadline for submissions this year is 28 February.
A grant of £1,325 was made, in December, to The Link Community, Sheffield. The letter below, demonstrates how much the contribution of Brethren and their families, is appreciated by those less fortunate: The Link
Sheffield 28/12/2020 Dear Brethren,
I am writing to express our thanks and appreciation for granting The Link Community the funding to help The Solace group.
I was able to share the good news with the women in this group and to say they are over the moon with the decision is an understatement.
All too often, women who are living with domestic violence have incredibly low self-esteem and feel that nobody cares about their situation. We help and support women through their journey and are continually trying to boost their confidence and self-worth.
It was amazing to hear one of my ladies, when hearing the news about the funding, say: “Someone actually cares” and the rest of the ladies agreed.
So, thank you for caring and making 2021 a year to look forward to. Best wishes
This latest newsletter gives details of grants awarded during December to charities and organisations across the Province. Its aim is to ensure that all Brethren and their families within Yorkshire, West Riding are aware of the work that WRMCL is doing to support those within our communities. Since the previous update, the Provincial Grand Master’s Fund has made grants, totalling nearly £13,000, to eleven community organisations, where it is hoped there will be the biggest impact in terms of community benefit: Woodhead Mountain Rescue Team - The team’s prime objective is to search for and alleviate the distress of persons lost or injured in the hills. However, they do much more; in addition to mountain rescue work, they assist the Yorkshire Ambulance Service in treating and evacuating casualties in rural areas, mostly mountain bikers and horse riders. They also assist the Police in searching for vulnerable missing persons. During the pandemic there has been a rise in this type of search, particularly involving people suffering from depression.
The Team (pictured recovering an injured Mountain Biker in Grenoside Woods) are now using a great deal of additional PPE, both for themselves and for the casualties. On completion of a rescue the team members have to thoroughly clean-down and sanitise the inside of vehicles and equipment, all adding financial cost. The grant of £2,000 will be used to purchase and replace; fuel, PPE kit, First Aid supplies and equipment used in rescues; sponsored by Albert Edward Lodge No 1783, Huddersfield. Huddersfield & District University of the Third Age is a voluntary organisation, providing educational and recreational activities for people over the age of 50 or registered disabled. More than 100 subjects are offered, in areas such as science, literature, history, languages and keep fit. All the tutors and organisers are unpaid volunteers.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, face-to-face learning opportunities cannot take place in the Huddersfield area. In order to provide on-line virtual learning through the Zoom platform, the organisation is required to purchase Zoom licences and the grant of £1,000 will allow them to do so; sponsored by Albert Edward Lodge No 1783. Home-Start, Kirklees is a voluntary organisation, committed to promoting the welfare of children. They offer practical and emotional support to families living in Kirklees, with at least one child under the age of 5 and not in full time education. Volunteers work alongside families to give support, to help people regain the confidence to be the parents they want to be. Normally, at Christmas, they hold a party for the families. Due to the pandemic, they are unable to do so this year and are, instead, supplying food hampers to the families and a present for 98 children. The grant of £1,320 has been used to provide Christmas gifts; sponsored by Beaumont Lodge No 2035, Kirkburton. Emma Franks, Business Manager at Home-Start, Kirklees wrote, ‘Thank you for your very generous donation. This has been used to purchase Christmas gifts for children in our families who would otherwise receive very little at this time of year.’ Sheffield Sea Cadets aim to help young people towards responsible adulthood, by encouraging valuable personal attributes and high standards of conduct, using a nautical theme based on customs of the Royal Navy. Through various activities and adventures, cadets learn teamwork, respect, loyalty, self-confidence, commitment, self-discipline, honesty and how to be the best version of themselves. Not unlike the attributes learnt through Freemasonry.
Following the theft of their mini-bus, a replacement vehicle is needed to transport the cadets around the UK, enabling them to attend events and competitions, once COVID-19 restrictions are lifted. Regrettably, the insurance pay-out did not reflect the cost of purchasing such a vehicle and the grant of £2,000 will assist in the acquisition; sponsored by Welcome Lodge No 3779. The Link Community Hub is a group set up by local people in the middle of the Stradbroke estate, to the east of Sheffield, to provide a range of support, assistance and activities to the local community; bringing together the needy, vulnerable and lonely and often depressed; working to meet their needs, through Food Bank referrals, emergency clothing and household goods packages. They aim to build people’s confidence, in a safe and supportive environment in an area of multi deprivation. A community garden project has been started, in an area where a high number of residents live in high-rise flats; providing the only safe and secure outdoor space for many. There is also a ‘Solace Area’ being developed as a safe zone for women, who have suffered domestic abuse, to experience therapeutic arts and craft skills. The grant of £1,325 will contribute towards the cost of the solace area; sponsored by Sheaf Lodge No 6990. Wath upon Dearne Community Partnership is a charity providing facilities to accommodate numerous community groups and services, including a Foodbank, providing for the elderly, disadvantaged families and vulnerable in the community. A team of volunteers provide and deliver food parcels and services 7 days a week. A grant of £2,000 was made from the PGM’s Fund in May 2020 and was match-funded by a similar amount from the Masonic Charitable Foundation. This further grant, of £2,000, is to support Christmas hampers for the Food Bank recipients and to enable the purchase of supplies for the Food Bank, as well as contributing to the running costs of the hall; sponsored by Rockingham Lodge No 4282, Mexborough. Women’s Refuge, Doncaster supports women and children to live without fear of violence. through a specialist refuge. They also offer refuge space for men, as well as community-based support for anyone fleeing or experiencing domestic abuse. The grant of £250 is to purchase Christmas presents for the children staying at the refuge over the Christmas period; sponsored by Lodge of South Yorkshire No 9633, Sheffield. Rotherham Safe Haven– A team of volunteers prepare, provide and serve hot evening meals to homeless and vulnerable people sleeping on the streets of Rotherham. They operate from a town centre building on College Street. Their only rule is, ‘If someone comes to our door, they come in; we refuse no one.’ Currently preparing and serving meals from old. wooden camping tables, the grant of £864 will be used to purchase six stainless steel tables; sponsored by Rotherwood Lodge No 4392. Rotherham Rugby Club Ltd promote the playing of and active participation in, amateur rugby union within the local community. The Club provides facilities, playing and coaching opportunities in rugby football, to people of all abilities, regardless of race or gender. The Rotherham Ladies rugby team encourages youngsters from the local community to take up the game and has a policy of not turning away those unable to pay the modest membership subscription. Many young girls may be deterred from joining due to the cost of kit and boots and the Club are keen to overcome this hurdle by loaning items when necessary. The grant of £600 is to purchase boots, for use by players unable to provide their own; sponsored by Rotherwood Lodge No 4392. The Friends of Musica Shelley is a group of volunteers established in the 1970s and has financially supported a Music Centre, held at Shelley College, each Saturday morning during school term times. Administered by Musica Kirklees, the Centre serves the village communities of Shelley, Kirkburton, Shepley, Scissett and Denby Dale and is attended by 250 school-age children. The ‘Friends’ help finance the Centre by running a tuck shop and coffee bar, organising raffles and fund-raising events. One of the ‘Friends’ main aims is to ensure that no child in the locality is excluded from having the joy of playing a musical instrument because of financial constraints. At a time when there is a spotlight on positive mental health, especially through lockdown and returning to an unusual school experience, they have harnessed every opportunity to keep local children playing their instruments and meeting up with their musical friends. The grant of £500 will go some way to allowing the Centre to continue to function through this difficult time; sponsored by Rectitude Lodge No 4383, Wakefield. Leeds Destitute Asylum-seekers Support (LEDAS) - The charity’s purpose is to help individuals, who find themselves with no recourse to public funds, to avoid street-homelessness; ensuring that the people they help are treated with dignity and respect. The grant of £819 will be used to purchase household appliances for use in two houses, providing emergency accommodation and will enable the residents to keep their clothes and their living environment clean and hygienic; sponsored by Loyalty Lodge No 4971. Dr Gillian Tober, Chair of LEDAS wrote, ‘I would like to thank West Riding Masonic Charities for the very generous grant. I hope that your colleagues and families, have a safe and comfortable Christmas and New Year.’ In addition, and in conjunction with the South Yorkshire Lord Lieutenancy, a grant of £5,500 has been made to Whirlow Hall Farm Trust. This is a working farm and an educational trust, based in Sheffield, primarily to help youngsters make the most of their potential. The children they help struggle in mainstream education, have learning difficulties and suffer from anxieties. The aim is to support them and develop their emotional and social skills and life skills to avoid isolation. Demand for their services has trebled in the past three years and there is a need to expand the facilities. The grant will go towards a new educational building and an increase in their commercial facilities. The project will cost £1m and should be opened in September 2021.
I am writing in my capacity as the Chairman of the Friends of Connaught Court to thank you for the contribution that you have made towards our funds this year. As you know it has been a very challenging year with the pandemic and we have been unable to hold our Summer fair which provides the majority of the funds that we require to fulfill our financial obligations to the home. The major project that we are working on at the moment is to provide a second visitor pod at the home to allow families to be reunited within a safe environment. As part of the Care Operations team at the RMBI this is something which is particularly close to me and i feel very important to both the residents and their families. The money which you have so generously donated will go towards the £10,000 cost of this.
If you would like any further information on our work or how the money is spent please do not hesitate to ask.
When I saw an advert in the Doncaster Councils Covid-19 weekly email update I passed the info on to my daughter Jade who along with Sandra, the wife of W. Bro Dennis Atkin, has joined the small army of volunteers helping to make Scrubs for the vastly under-supplied Doncaster and Bassetlaw NHS workers.
The volunteer team is sponsored by Refurnish, owned, and run by Andy Simson. Refurnish is a Doncaster based charity which works in partnership with the local authority and Sita UK to collect bulky household furniture and goods from domestic properties in the Doncaster Borough. Wherever possible these items are reused or recycled and put to good use. During this period of lock down, Doncaster Refurnish has effectively diversified its skills into supporting volunteers to produce scrubs for front line workers in hospitals and care homes in their own localities. A dedicated Facebook page enables the individual members to remain engaged with the rest of the group.
From Left: Jade Evans, Linda and Sarah Chapman, W. Bro Andy Evans, Catherine Ford, Annette Noble, Joan White, Kerry Burton, Elsie Tinker, Marina Grimshaw, Claire McConville, Mandy Elks, Michelle Boardman, Coleen Besfold and Andy Burton.
Individual “Scrubs” sets quality checked and size-packaged ready for delivery
NHS staff wearing the most welcomed Scrubs.
Sets of Scrubs made and washed ready to deliver back to Kerry and her team at Nightshades.
Brethren your Charity has continued to work on your behalf for those in need within the Province, both Masonic and non-Masonic,
Since our last update [13 April 20] the PGM’s Fund has made grants to the following charities;-
£2500 - The Howarth Foundation, Leeds and Kirklees. The primary activity of this Charity is to prevent or relieve poverty in respect of individuals who are or have recently been homeless.
£3000 - Swinnow Community Centre is a community centre run by volunteers and accommodates various community groups. From the beginning of the pandemic they have been providing hot food and sandwiches to 200 local children and 100 elderly persons every day.
£3000 - Homeless Street Angels, Leeds City Centre. The charity provides support for the homeless with hot food, clean clothes and toiletries.
£2000 - Thorne & Moorlands Community Hub is a food bank assisting families, children and single people in the community. All those involved in its organisation are volunteers. Local families already relied upon the Hub for assistance and support. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic and its effect on the local community the Hub is having to increase the number of food parcels to help those in dire need.
£2000 - FaithNet is a self funded food bank run by local volunteers who normally cover the areas of Featherstone, Sharlston, Streethouse and Ackton.. However, closure of other food banks within the area due to COVID-19 has increased the need for assistance considerably whilst voluntary donations have diminished.
£1200 - Trinity Mission Food bank Castleford. They are currently providing "survival level" food to those in dire circumstances many of whom have dependent children. The food bank is manned solely by volunteers who gather, pack and distribute to the local community. Trinity Mission also provides broader services to others in need in the area.
As part of our ongoing programme we continue to support other charities. A donation of £2500 has been made to Prostate Cancer UK to help with raising awareness of the disease and hopefully encourage more men to have a test. The risk of developing prostate cancer increases with age. Most cases develop in men aged 50 and above. Be aware – Get checked NOW
PGM’s Fund grants from 1st April now total £53,000
CHOICES continues to provide assistance and support to our Brethren, their Widows, families and dependants who may be in financial distress or have other urgent, immediate or pressing needs.
From 1st April 2020 - 17 Grants have been made to a value of £14,750. 12 of which are Covid-19 related.
The process is quick, simple and extremely efficient. For the fastest response contact your Lodge Almoner. or ring the confidential help line on 03449 020220
CLICK Here for more information on WRMCL and its role. Our grateful thanks for your continuing generosity. W.Bro. Peter Worth and.W.Bro. Jack Pigott on behalf of WRMCL
WRMCL recently donated £19,200 to Leeds Teaching Hospitals to fund two patient vital signs monitors. These monitors will help with specialist care for those suffering from COVID-19. Below are two letters of thanks from LEEDS CARES to the WRMCL team who continue to work hard on your behalf, putting your generous charitable donations to excellent use.