Over £100,000 distributed to Yorkshire good causes

The Directors of West Riding Masonic Charities Ltd are delighted to announce the following Major Grants which were presented on behalf of The Provincial Grand Master’s Fund by R W Bro David S. Pratt, Provincial Grand Master, at the Annual Meeting of Provincial Grand Lodge held at The Royal Hall, Harrogate.  The address delivered is below:

The Provincial Grand Master’s Fund was created in 1986 to enable our West Riding Masonic Charity to make grants to Non Masonic Community Charitable Organisations
Grants were of a modest level (no more than £500) but were awarded when such a grant would make a significant difference to the Organisation  – in some cases these grants enabled the organisation to continue to operate when faced with likely closure.
To date some £2.75m has been awarded from the PGMs fund
The Major Grants scheme was introduced in 2008 with a fund of £100,000 allocated each year to enable more substantial awards to be made.
Unlike the minor grants scheme the annual Major Grants are a competition , and it is not an easy task for the Provincial Grand Master Fund committee to select the successful beneficiaries.
W Bro Maurice Bendig has now retired from the Committee but the pro forma assessment and comparison system developed by him continues to be used.
This year 26 nominations were made by Lodges and Chapters and it was particularly difficult to make a final selection of 5.
The five selected were considered to be particularly deserving, and the grants awards will, indeed, make a significant difference to the organisations concerned.

Autism Plus

Autism Plus are an organisation concerned with the welfare and support of people with Autism.
There are 10 million people in the UK with disabilities, 1 million in Yorkshire
Researches have indicated that almost three quarters of people with disabilities are also obese or overweight.
Autism plus ran a pilot scheme in cooperation with Sheffield United FC and a City Council sports centre to provide gym fitness sessions for their clients using leased equipment from the club.
77% of those participating saw their body weight fall, demonstrating the success of the pilot.
The lease arrangement for the equipment is coming to an end and Autism Plus needed to purchase their own specialised equipment if they were to continue the scheme long term, and to increase the number of sessions available and reduce the waiting list.
An application for the purchase of the necessary specialised equipment was sponsored by  Welcome Chapter No 3779
A grant of £14, 544 is made to purchase the necessary specialised equipment.
To receive the award on behalf of Autism Plus are:-

Philip Bartley and Mark Burton

South Yorks MS Therapy Centre

South Yorks MS Therapy Centre was established in 1985 operating from an industrial unit until its new purpose built centre was opened in 2001 the funding for the centre and the  £116,000 annual running costs are all self funded.
The Centre provides a range of innovative holistic therapies and support for sufferers of MS and other neurological conditions and has a client base of over 200.
One drawback facing the clients of the centre is that in inclement weather they are exposed to the elements as they disembark from transport and enter the centre. (this process can often take 10-15 minutes)
The application sponsored by Fellowship Lodge No 4069 is to fund a weather proof canopy to allow vehicles to disembark clients sheltered from the elements.
A grant of £20,000 to fund the cost of construction of the canopy is awarded.
To receive the award are on behalf of South Yorks MS Therapy Centre are:-

Lynne Foster and Julia Conlan-Graves

Whizz Kids

Whizz Kids  exists to provide customised mobility equipment to disabled children and young people.
Supplying a customised wheelchair  is just the start for their young clients.
Whizz Kids approach is holistic, not only by providing the essential equipment but also by providing wheelchair skills training, work placements, residential life skills camps, and a network of youth clubs.
They also provide specialised sports wheelchairs for recreational activities, companion cycles for familial use, and buggies for early development.
The application for funding to purchase more equipment for their ever increasing client list is sponsored by Savile Lodge No 1231
A grant of £20,000 is awarded
To receive the award on behalf of Whizz Kids  is:-
Emma Jones

West Yorkshire Multiple Sclerosis Centre

West Yorkshire Multiple Sclerosis Centre provides a therapy of breathing relief for its clients by supplying oxygen for them to breath under increased air pressure.
Due to a fire in neighbouring premises, a new centre needed to be found.
Through their own funding efforts finances for the new centre for at least the next two years are assured.
Funding however is still required to purchase the essential “Pressure Swing Absorption Oxygen Generator”
An application for funding to buy this equipment was sponsored by Harmony Lodge No275
A grant of £26,225 is awarded
To receive this award on behalf of West Yorkshire Multiple Sclerosis Centre are:-

Joanne Goodwin and Linda Toothill


Skate4Isaac is a fundraising campaign to improve the Sands Skateboarding Park in Holmfirth.
Isaac Atkinson and a group of young people set out to raise the £55,000 needed to improve the Park
Tragically Isaac died at the age of 14, and, understandably, as a consequence the fundraising ground to a halt.
Eventually his friends decided to carry on and the fundraising was re-launched as “Skate4Isaac”.
The whole project was driven by the young people themselves but run by their parents.
The Committee were particularly impressed that this small enthusiastic group had raised the amazing sum of £30,000 through their own efforts.
An application to contribute the project was sponsored by Holme Valley Lodge No 652
A grant of £25,000 is awarded to enable the project to be completed
To receive the award on behalf of Skate4Isaac are:-

Mr and Mrs Atkinson

TOTAL £105,769.00

For further information,please contact Roger.Newhouse@lineone.net

Posted in Charity News on May 7th, 2014 by David Clough

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