This will be the final report on the Provincial Grand Master’s "Famous Five" initiative, and I am delighted to tell you that following my appeal last year, the initiative which has been running since May 2013, has donated a grand total of £160, 346 to selected non-masonic Warwickshire Charities. Cheques have now been presented to the charities concerned and previous articles have documented these events.
This remarkable amount has been raised by Warwickshire Freemasons at their meetings and social events, in addition to their regular support for other charities. The "Famous Five" has been incredibly well supported by the majority of Warwickshire Lodges since it was launched, and has benefitted the following charities in stages over the last four years by the amounts indicated below:
|Acorns Children’s Hospice||£42,500|
|Birmingham Children’s Hospital||£42,500|
|Midlands Air Ambulance||£21,250|
|Warwickshire & Northamptonshire Air Ambulance||£21,250|
|St Mary’s Collegiate Church, Warwick||£32,846|
Warwickshire Freemasons are pleased and proud to be able to support all of these charities, in both financial and practical terms, and will continue to provide that support through the Warwickshire Masonic Charitable Association and individual Lodges.
The Relief Chest for the Warwickshire Masonic Charitable Association remains open with a small balance, and in time, a system may be developed to enable Lodges who do not have a Relief Chest of their own to make donations with gift aid added, to their own chosen Registered Charities. My recommendation, which has already been taken up by a good number of Lodges, is for each Lodge to open a Relief Chest of its own. This is easily and quickly achievable – full details are available on this link - https://mcf.org.uk/reliefchest/ or by a phone call to the MCF on 020 3146 3333. Enquiries to the Charity Office are welcome and assistance will be given if required. Any Lodge which opens a Relief Chest retains full control over their charitable funds, which can subsequently be directed to registered charities or to Lodge widows and dependants.
Provincial Charity Steward