MCF Community Awards – Over 3000 Votes A Day!

The Masonic Charitable Foundation Community Awards this year not only resulted in many good causes across the nation receiving financial contributions towards the incredible work they do, but also raised significant awareness of the efforts made by Freemasons in raising those funds, as demonstrated by the “infographic” below:

MCF Community Awards in Numbers

Download Infographic Here

Read about the Charities that received awards in The Province of Yorksire West Riding here.


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Ripon Cathedral To Host Masonic Ceremony Last Held In Province Of Yorkshire West Riding More Than A Century Ago

An historic Masonic ceremony last performed in the “West Riding” more than a century ago will be revived this Sunday (September 24) in one of Yorkshire’s oldest churches.

The laying of a commemorative flagstone within Ripon Cathedral – to mark the Tercentenary of the first United Grand Lodge of England and financial support given by Freemasons towards the building’s ongoing restoration work – will form an integral part of the Freemasons Province of Yorkshire West Riding’s annual Service of Thanksgiving.

More than 500 Freemasons and their partners will be joined on the day by the Assistant Grand Master, Sir David Wootton, the Lord Lieutenants of North, South and West Yorkshire, together with Civic Dignitaries from throughout the Province.

The flagstone – which will be laid in the North Transept by the Provincial Grand Master, assisted by his Deputy and the Provincial Wardens, in accordance with ancient Masonic ceremony – has been engraved with the legend “The Province of Yorkshire West Riding and the Masonic Charitable Foundation supported restoration work in the Cathedral to mark 300 years of Freemasonry 1717-2017”.

The carving and engraving has been carried out by Colin Rickard and Wayne Denny, in the stonemasons’ yard adjacent to the cathedral.

The pair have spent the last year repairing and replacing worn out and damaged flagstones within the cathedral paid for by two grants totalling £12,500 – £7,500 from West Riding Masonic Charities Ltd, and a second, of £5,000, from the Masonic Charitable Foundation.

Carved in Stone! Stonemason Colin Rickard works on the ceremonial stone which is being laid in Ripon Cathedral’s North Transept.


Rt W Bro David S Pratt, The Provincial Grandmaster of the Province of Yorkshire West Riding, said: “This will be a significant event in the history of the Province, as it is the first time in 127 years that such a ceremony has taken place.

“On that occasion, the Provincial Grand Master laid the foundation stone of the North Aisle of Mexborough Church on 24 July 1890.

“What was once a common practice during the construction of many buildings is now rarely performed. It is wonderful that Ripon Cathedral is affording us the honour of conducting what will be a once-in-a-life-time ceremony.”

“We are also delighted that Sir David Wootton and dignitaries from across our Province will be joining us on the day for this multi-faith service.”


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Eight Yorkshire Charities Financial Winners Of Masonic Community Awards Public Vote

Yorkshire charities are thousands of pounds better off today (Tuesday, September 6) thanks to the Freemasons and a public vote!

As part of the fraternity’s tercentenary celebrations, the Masonic Charitable Foundation pledged £3m to 300 organisations nationwide, with the Province of Yorkshire West Riding’s slice being £79,000.

Here, the public had eight charities to choose from. The one receiving the most votes would be awarded £25,000, whilst two would receive £15,000 each, two £6,000 each and three £4,000 each.

The total number of votes cast in the Province of Yorkshire West Riding – which incorporates West, South and parts of East and North Yorkshire – was 5,947, and the organisation that topped the provincial poll was Aurora Wellbeing Centre, in Mexborough, which will receive £25,000.

Two Harrogate charities, Vision Support Harrogate District and Paperworks (Harrogate) Limited, both receive £15,000.

Motive8 Bradford Ltd and Autism Plus in Sheffield and Thorne both get £6,000, whilst Leeds based Learning Partnerships, Selby District Peter Pan Nursery and Halifax based Skillshop Limited each receive £4,000.

Rt W Bro David S Pratt, Provincial Grand Master of the Province of Yorkshire West Riding, said: “I’m delighted that all of these eight charities within our area are benefitting from these community awards.

“I would like to thank everyone who took the time to vote for one of these superb organisations, and the great news is there are no losers, only winners.

“In addition to this year being the 300th anniversary of the founding of the first Grand Lodge in England, our Province is also celebrating its bicentenary.

“To mark this double milestone we have increased the annual amount we award to charities, via the Provincial Grand Master’s Fund, from £200,000 to £300,000. Again, this will benefit a huge number of organisations doing wonderful work across our Province.”

Learning Partnerships
Learning Partnerships is a Leeds based charity with 25 years experience of working in the inner city to provide opportunities and support for children, young people and adults to access education, employment, training and volunteering. Learning Partnerships offer a range of programmes and opportunities from volunteering and work placement schemes to diverse training and educational courses.

Selby District Peter Pan Nursery
Peter Pan Nursery is a pre-school nursery for children and families in North and West Yorkshire with additional needs. Places are available for children with additional needs, disabilities, illness, learning difficulties, behavioural issues etc. We also support children whose families are experiencing difficulties or are in need of respite and support.

Vision Support Harrogate District
We seek to enable visually impaired people to live independently and provide opportunities to meet and interact with other visually impaired people. We offer Information Technology training; provide advice on the help that is available; information on what being visually impaired means; opportunities to socialise, develop, or re-awaken craft skills.

Paperworks (Harrogate) Limited
To assist people with learning and/or physical disabilities through educational and vocational training to encourage and enable them to find gainful employment.
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Skillshop Limited
The aim of Skillshop is to provide specialised training for adults with learning disabilities in a caring environment. The objectives are to improve people’s self-esteem, confidence and personal development and break down social isolation. Based in Halifax.
Motive8 Bradford Ltd
Motive8 offers a tailor-made provision for young people that are NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training). Learners are able to identify their own goals and will be helped to realise their potential through personalised learning plans.

Aurora Wellbeing Centres
Aurora Wellbeing Centres support local people and their families living with cancer. Anyone with a diagnosis receives a free package of support, wellbeing programmes and holistic & beauty treatments to help raise their self-esteem and confidence.? For centre based in Mexborough.

Autism Plus
A charity that supports adults and young people with autism, learning disabilities and mental health conditions across Yorkshire and Humber. Based in Sheffield and Thorne.


previous post: Provincial Charity Newsletter – September 2017

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Brain tumour research, tackling social isolation and much more from the MCF

  • TACKLING LONELINESS AND ISOLATION
  • ADVANCING BRAIN TUMOUR RESEARCH
  • SUPPORTING FAMILIES AFFECTED BY AUTISM
  • FEEDING PEOPLE IN TIMES OF CRISIS
  • MCF COMMUNITY AWARDS

Read the latest Masonic Charitable Foundation newsletter at the link below:

MCF NEWSLETTER


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MCF Tercentenary Community Awards – LAST CHANCE TO VOTE TODAY! (31st July)

MCF TERCENTENARY COMMUNITY AWARDS 2017
Three Hundred Charities, Three Million Pounds, Three Hundred Years of Freemasonry.

CAST YOUR VOTE

To celebrate the Tercentenary of the first Grand Lodge, the Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF) has pledged to give £3m to 300 organisations nationwide, with the Province of Yorkshire West Riding – which incorporates West, South, and parts of North and East, Yorkshire – being earmarked to receive £79,000.

Eight charities nominated by the Province will receive grants, the size of grant being decided by a public vote. To ensure the charity of your choice has the best possible chance of receiving a large grant it is up to you to rally round your Brethren, Family, Friends, Work Colleagues, and in fact anyone you can get to cast a vote.

To cast your vote, and to find out more about the MCF, please visit the voting website at www.mcf.org.uk/region/yorkshire-west-riding/ and register.

Those from the region that have been selected for a grant are:

• Leeds based Learning Partnerships
• Selby District Peter Pan Nursery
• Vision Support Harrogate District
• Paperworks (Harrogate) Limited
• Halifax based Skillshop Limited
• Motive8 Bradford Ltd
• Aurora Wellbeing Centre in Mexborough
• Autism Plus in Sheffield and Thorne.

The regional charity that receives the most votes will be awarded £25k, whilst two will receive £15k each, two £6k each and three £4k each.

More information about the nominated charities can be found at the voting website.


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Special Olympics Initiative Gets Disabled Leeds Children Active, Thanks To £60,000 Masonic Donation

Disabled children from across Leeds attended a special sporting event in the city on today, (Wednesday) thanks to funding from the Freemasons.

The grant of £60,000 has helped to expand a Special Olympics initiative, which gives people across the Yorkshire region with profound learning difficulties the chance to participate in sporting activities.

There was special emphasis on expanding the Special Olympics Motor Training Programme (MATP), funding additional resources and training so it could reach several thousand people rather than just a few hundred.

The grant from the Freemasons Province of Yorkshire West Riding came through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which was funded by Freemasons and their families from across England and Wales.

The 12-week courses are directed at adults and children who were unable to participate in regular Special Olympics sessions as their disabilities are so complex.

And, today, the final MATP Leeds challenge event of the year saw the athletes demonstrating the motor skills they had learned over the last three months.

Angela Lydon, Special Olympics MATP programme co-leader at Farnley Academy Partnership, said: “I would like to say a huge thank you to the Freemasons for the wonderful donation, which has helped to expand our Motor Training Programme.”

David S Pratt, the Provincial Grand Master of the Freemasons Province of Yorkshire West Riding, said: “This has been a momentous year for Freemasons nationally as we celebrate the 300th anniversary of the first grand lodge of England, and, in West Yorkshire, we mark our bicentenary.

“We were delighted to be able to help the Special Olympics with this excellent programme. The Special Olympics is special in more ways than one and we are proud to be associated with the outstanding organisation.

“The event at Farnley Academy Partnership was a great opportunity to showcase the Motor Training Programme and the benefits it has brought to disabled children and adults alike.”

Special Olympian! Special Olympics Athlete Oliver Court, from Churwell, Leeds, is pictured with his mother, Rachel, and Anthony Llewellyn, The Assistant Provincial Grandmaster of the Freemasons Province of Yorkshire West Riding.


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Eight Yorkshire Charities In Line For Share Of £3M, 300 Grants, Giveaway!

Eight Yorkshire charities are to be the financial winners when Freemasons nationally celebrate the fraternity’s 300th anniversary.

To celebrate the Tercentenary of the first Grand Lodge, the Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF) has pledged to give £3m to 300 organisations nationwide, with the Province of Yorkshire West Riding – which incorporates West, South, and parts of North and East, Yorkshire – being earmarked to receive £79,000.

And, for the first time in the MCF’s history, the size of the grant given to the shortlisted eight will be determined by a public vote, with the winners being announced in the summer.

Those from the region that have been selected for a grant are:

• Leeds based Learning Partnerships
• Selby District Peter Pan Nursery
• Vision Support Harrogate District
• Paperworks (Harrogate) Limited
• Halifax based Skillshop Limited
• Motive8 Bradford Ltd
• Aurora Wellbeing Centre in Mexborough
• Autism Plus in Sheffield and Thorne.

The regional charity that receives the most votes will be awarded £25k, whilst two will receive £15k each, two £6k each and three £4k each.

Rt W Bro David S Pratt, Provincial Grand Master of the Province of Yorkshire West Riding, said: “Charitable giving has been at the very heart of Freemasonry since the formation of the first Grand Lodge of England 300 years ago.

“As one of the many ways in which we are marking this significant milestone, the Masonic Charitable Foundation is making £3m available to 300 charities.

“I’m delighted to say that eight charities from within our Province will benefit financially from this fantastic community awards initiative.

“Through these grants we hope we will achieve our core charitable aims of relieving sickness and poverty, advancing education and supporting the most disadvantaged within our communities.”

He added: “This year, our own Province is also marking its bicentenary, and we are increasing the annual amount we award to charities via the Provincial Grand Master’s Fund from £200,000 to £300,000.

“Again, this will benefit a huge number of organisations doing wonderful work across our Province.”

To vote for a charity, and to find out more about the MCF, members of the public are asked to visit https://mcf.org.uk/region/yorkshire-west-riding/ and register.

The voting process opens today (Monday, June 12) and closes on Monday, July 31.


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Yorkshire Air Ambulance

Huddersfield’s Peter Sunderland, Chairman of Yorkshire Air Ambulance (YAA), reiterates his grateful thanks to Yorkshire Freemasons for their “amazing and continuing support” for the charity.

It costs YAA £12,000 a day to keep their two helicopters operational. Peter commented on how valuable and appreciated the support of the Masonic Grand Charity (MCF), West Riding Masonic Charities Limited (WRMCL), and individual Lodge contributions over a sustained period of time is.

WRMCL director, Colin Dent, and APGM, John Gledhill, enjoyed a conducted tour of the support unit base at Nostell Priory. They gained an insight into the controls of the new £6m Airbus 145, and state-of-the-art medical kit from on-duty pilots, doctor and paramedics.

Director of fund-raising, Paul Gowland, confirms that a YAA representative will gladly attend Lodge meetings or social functions to explain the work of this rapid-response and life-saving charity. White Rose of York Lodge are to host such an event for members, family and friends at Tapton Masonic Hall on 7 July 2017.

Colin and John with YAA personnel and the helicopter at Nostell


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Provincial Grand Lodge – 2nd May 2017

For those of you who attended the Provincial Grand Lodge meeting in Harrogate on Tuesday, and of course for those of you who couldn’t make it, you can read the Provincial Grand Master’s address and the Masonic Charitable Foundation report to PGL at the links below:

Provincial Grand Masters Address to Provincial Grand Lodge, 2nd May 2017

Masonic Charitable Foundation Report to PGL May 2017


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Masonic Charitable Foundation – Lifelites

One of our most important principles is that of charitable giving. Freemasons make a major contribution to society through their own charities, as well as through donations to UK charities and worldwide disaster relief funds.

We do not undertake any external fundraising. All money donated comes from our own efforts.

Through the Masonic Charitable Foundation and its predecessor charities, Freemasons have given around £130 million to charities across England, Wales and overseas in recent years, in addition to supporting thousands of members and their families in need.

One Masonic initiative was Lifelites, a charity which provides technology packages for every baby and children’s hospice in the British Isles. Even though the charity is now well-established, the MCF still helps by providing office premises and administrative services.

For more information about Lifelites, from Dame Esther Rantzen who is a patron, feel free to view the video linked from the MCF Lifelites page: MCF – Lifelites


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