Freemasons And Zumba Enthusiasts Raise More Than £7,000 For Harrogate District Hospital’s Nidderdale Ward
Harrogate District Hospital’s Nidderdale Ward has been given £7,148 to purchase new reclining bedside chairs, thanks to local Freemasons and Zumba enthusiasts.
Harlow Lodge nominated the ward as the beneficiary of its fundraising activities in memory of the late Irene Simister, the mother of two of its members, who spent the last month of her life being cared for by staff before her death.
An observation the pair made during the hours they spent at her bedside was the comfort of the chairs, so they set about raising funds to replace worn out and broken pieces of furniture.
Additionally, another lodge member, Fernando Sarmento De Alencar, organised a sponsored Zumbathon at Harrogate High School in aid of the appeal, which raised £4,100.
Harlow Lodge, one of five craft lodges that meet in Harrogate’s Masonic Hall, raised £1,148 which was further enhanced by a £1,900 donation courtesy of the Freemasons Province of Yorkshire West Riding’s Provincial Grand Master’s Fund.
Andrew Simister, Master of Harlow Lodge and Irene Simister’s eldest son, said: “I would like to pay tribute to everyone who has contributed towards this fund-raising initiative for Nidderdale Ward. I can’t thank them enough.
“Whilst the care of patients is quite rightly the hospital’s number one priority, the comfort of visitors is also an important concern, in particular those spending lengthy hours with loved ones nearing the end of their lives.
“The £7,148 raised will certainly be able to fund the replacement of a good number of chairs for the ward’s side rooms.”
David Fisher, Community and Events Fundraiser at Harrogate Hospital and Community Charity, said: “On behalf of Harrogate District Hospital and in particular Nidderdale Ward, I would like to say a huge thank you for the incredible support of the Simister family and their friends who have worked so hard to raise funds to make improvements to the comfort on the ward.
“Harrogate Hospital and Community Charity raises money to help make a difference to the care end experiences of local patients and their families, going above and beyond that which the NHS can provide.
“The staff are extremely grateful for the generous financial support, and in recognition of this, a plaque in memory of Mrs Simister will be placed within the ward.”
The Mayor of Bradford, Coun Abid Hussain, centre, is pictured with from left Freemasons Howard Richardson, Anthony Llewellyn, Provincial Grand Master David S Pratt, Stuart Grantham, Alan Elstone and Roger Newhouse
Freemasons have boosted the Lord Mayor of Bradford’s Appeal – which is raising money for Down Syndrome Training and Support Services and the Wishing Well Appeal – by £2,500.
The money came via the West Riding Masonic Charities Ltd, and was presented to the Lord Mayor, Coun Abid Hussain, by a delegation of West Yorkshire freemasons led by the Provincial Grand Master, Rt WBro David S Pratt.
The Down Syndrome Training and Support Services is a charity based in Bingley designed to support children and young adults with down syndrome. The charity is currently going through a funding crisis and therefore is in dire need of donations.
The other supported cause is the Wishing Well Appeal – an umbrella group which provides small grants for small groups and organisations.
Rt WBro Pratt said: “As always, the money has been raised by lodge members across the Province of Yorkshire West Riding, and their generosity is helping support two important charities.
“Charity is one of the three great principles that our order is founded on, and it is still very much at the heart of what we do here, within our own Province.
“It’s fantastic to support both charities, who do some much good in the community.”
Trailer Cash! Freemasons Sean McPartland, Joe Cocker, Worshipful Master Harrogate & Claro Lodge; Phil Airey Horticap operations manager; Freemasons Tim Wilkinson, Michael Baxter and ohn Birkenshaw, watched on by a group of Horticap student on the trailer behind
Harrogate charity Horticap has been presented with a specialist vehicle trailer by Harrogate & Claro Lodge No 1001, from funds provided by the West Yorkshire Provincial Grand Master’s Charity Fund, specially set up for local charities within the region.
The trailer will enable a second team of Horticap students to transport a ride-on mower and other gardening equipment to carry out gardening work for customer in the local area.
This will directly increase their range of work opportunities in the community whilst increasing their skills and learning opportunities.
Handing over the trailer, the Worshipful Master of Harrogate and Claro Lodge No 1001, Joe Cocker said: “This particular charity is the sort we are looking to support within the Harrogate area as they provide vital support, training and guidance to vulnerable adults.”
Phil Airey of Horticap said: “Our very existence is to support our students with learning disabilities and the trailer will enable us to expand our work to more students. We are delighted that the Freemasons have recognised this and are extremely grateful to them.”
Horticap was established in 1984 to provide students (who are all adults with learning disabilities) with training and support in horticulture whilst developing their social and communication skills.
Scout leader Carl Oates, back right, and John Watson, charity steward from Victoria Lodge, back left, with members of the 1st Thorner & Scarcroft Scout Group holding the cheque from the Freemasons
A Leeds scouts group has “soaked” up a grant of £2,000 from the Freemasons to purchase new wetsuits.
The donation to 1st Thorner & Scarcroft Scout Group came via the Freemasons Province of West Yorkshire’s Provincial Grand Master’s Fund, who were nominated for financial backing by members of Victoria Lodge, which meets at the Midland Hotel in Bradford.
Each year, the Province of Yorkshire West Riding presents grants adding up to £200,000, but, to mark the tercentenary of the United Grand Lodge of England and the Province’s bicentenary, this figure rose to £300,000.
Lodge charity steward John Watson presented the cheque to the scout group, which “provides fun, challenging and adventurous activities to boys and girls aged six to 14”, at their meeting at Thorner Parish Centre.
Group Scout Leader James Nehaul said: “We are very grateful to John and the members of Victoria Lodge for nominating us for this grant.
“We are now one big step closer to being able to provide watersports activities to local young people using our own qualified volunteers, which will make a massive difference to our programme.”
John Watson, Victoria Lodge charity steward, said: “We are delighted that our application to the Provincial Grand Master’s Fund was successful, and this fantastic scout group will now be able to purchase wetsuits for use by the young members.”
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