The Coronavirus pandemic has dealt a major blow to the fundraising of many organisations and the voluntary rescue services are no exception.
As a team of volunteers, providing mountain rescue services in the Calder Valley and surrounding areas, the Calder Valley Search & Rescue Team are wholly dependent upon the local community for their funding.
The recent grant, of £2,500 from the Provincial Grand Master's Fund was greatly appreciated and team treasurer, Matthew Greaves, wrote to thank the Freemasons of Yorkshire, West Riding and say what a big difference the support makes to the team.
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:
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.
Community Development Manager
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