Donations of over £66,000 to Local Charities

Our Provincial Grand Master had the pleasure of handing out cheques for over £66,000 on behalf of Middlesex Freemasons

Royal College of Surgeons                                                                                   £11,000

The Royal College of Surgeons is a registered charity (not part of the NHS) and plays a vital role in supporting surgical research within the UK. The Royal Arch Masons 2013 Bicentenary Appeal has been established to help fund the College’s successful surgical research fellowship scheme, which supports surgeons to undertake a surgical research project.

This scheme enables the brightest and best surgeons of each generation to explore treatments for conditions and injuries that affect millions of people worldwide. The College is very grateful to the generous support of Freemasonry which will help to support advancements in surgical care for current and future generations.

Dreamflight                                                                                                       £9,000
Once a year since 1987, 192 seriously ill and disabled children from all over the UK, accompanied by a team of medical carers, board a chartered Boeing 747 at Heathrow and head to Florida to spend 10 magical days of fun and excitement. They could not undertake such a trip without the support of the army of doctors, nurses, physiotherapists and non-medical volunteers who care for the children 24 hours a day.
It is not just a holiday. The children leave behind their families giving them an opportunity to discover independence, confidence, and a whole new outlook on life. Often for the first time, these children realise that they are not alone, and they are not the odd one out. They see children around them who have also suffered, they gain perspective, and experience things they never thought possible.
Dreamflight children have gone on to amazing achievements. In 2008, 8 of the returning Paralympians from Beijing, many of them medal winners, had been Dreamflight children citing the trip as a turning point for them.
Dreamflight believes that fun and joy are just as important as medical research and equipment – especially for children who perhaps can’t wait long enough for the breakthrough they need or whose illnesses and treatments have brought pain, distress and disruption to their lives.

1st Harrow Weald Scouts                                                                                        £6212
The 1st Harrow Weald Scout Group was founded in 1908, just a year after Baden Powell started Scouting, and registered with the newly formed Scout Association in 1909.
The Scouts started meeting in a wooden hut behind All Saints’ Church in Harrow Weald, and moved to the top of Clamp Hill just after WWII, when we were given an old ex-RAF concrete hut. That hut has been our HQ and home ever since. Over the years, hundreds of boys, and now, of course, girls, have been members of the Group and have been taught to live according to Baden Powell’s ideals. When the youngsters leave the Scouts, they can look after themselves, they will have taken part in many adventurous activities that other kids can only dream about, and, above all, they will have had FUN.
The money that you are giving to the Group will pay for new windows and security shutters for the building as part of a larger renovation exercise, and for which we are extremely grateful.

Lifelites                                                                                                                     £5,000
Lifelites is the only charity providing innovative technology for terminally ill children in every children’s hospice in the UK. With all sorts of assistive equipment, these children who are often restricted by associated disabilities, are able to communicate and express themselves and take control of at least one aspect of their lives – whatever their abilities. Terminally ill children and young people from Middlesex are cared for at Shooting Star Children’s Hospice in Hampton and Helen and Douglas House in Oxford. It costs Lifelites around £35,000 every four years at each children’s hospice to provide their full package of the latest technologies, to install it, train the care staff how to use it and to make sure they have access to help and advice via a helpline and on site maintenance when required. This donation will help Lifelites to do just that. And they don’t ask for a penny from the hospices towards their equipment and services.
Originally a project of the Royal Masonic Trust for Girls and Boys, Lifelites now raise all its own funds and relies entirely on donations to carry on their activities which can be seen as a beacon for the good work of Freemasons in their communities.

Mark Masons Benevolent Fund                                                                          £5,000
The Mark Benevolent Fund was founded in order that rapid relief could be given to Mark Masons and their Dependants in time of need. Each year one Province hosts a Festival to raise money for the Fund. The Fund itself has two components now. One provides for the needs of Mark Masons& dependants while the other provides assistance to good causes such as Medical research, provision of ambulances, assistance to hospices etc.

This year the Mark Province of Middlesex is hosting the 144th Festival, at RFU Twickenham on 29th September. Recently the Fund has given immediate help to five Middlesex Mark Masons, who are also Middlesex Craft masons, and will also be making grants to two charities in Middlesex. Middlesex Mark has supported Middlesex Craft over our past three Festivals and we now are able to repay some of that support.

Kids can Achieve                                                                                                   £4,683
Kids can Achieve was formed to support children and young people in the Harrow area whose educational, emotional, social and psychological difficulties were not being recognised. As a result in the gap in the provision these children were developing complex behaviours and lacked the social and coping skills which enable them to learn, play and socialise and have normal life opportunities.
It became apparent that children from within the range of diagnosis which include ADHD, Autistic Spectrum Disorders, Aspergers, Oppositional Defiance Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Schizophrenia and general communication disorders were particularly affected by the absence of understanding and suitable provision.
The organisation has grown rapidly and has quickly become influential and respected amongst both statutory and voluntary agencies and most importantly the families they serve. Demand for their services has increased and as its profile has risen and despite their successes they are conscious of an urgent need to extend and develop these services further.

Help for Heros                                                                                                         £3,700
Everybody has heard of Help For Heros. The phenomenal success of the marketing is a reflection of the feeling of the public toward this cause.  It is to provide practical, direct support for our current wounded. So far it has raised £128m and of that distributed £112m, with a current wish list valued at £67m.  As the charity puts it, “It’s about the ‘blokes’, our men and women of the Armed Forces.  It’s about Derek, a rugby player who has lost both his legs, it’s about Carl whose jaw is wired up so he has been drinking through a straw.  It’s about Richard who was handed a mobile phone as he lay on the stretcher so he could say goodbye to his wife.  It’s about Ben, it’s about Steve and Andy and Mark, it’s about all of them.  They are just blokes but they are our blokes; they are our heroes.  We want to help our heroes.”

Michael Sobell House                                                                                           £3,272

This is the hospice and specialist palliative care unit based at Mount Vernon Hospital in Northwood. Their aim is to ensure all patients who are facing life-limiting diseases, their families and carers receive the best possible care to enhance their quality of life. Patients may be admitted for symptom management, respite care, rehabilitation or for care in the last days of their life. The team is made up of doctors, nurses, chaplains, social workers, counsellors, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, complementary and art therapists, housekeepers, volunteers and administrative staff. There is also a day therapies unit to encourage individuals to maintain their independence.
This year they need to raise £1.2m just to maintain patient care at its current level.

Shooting Star CHASE                                                                                              £2,913

Shooting Star CHASE is the children’s hospice service, supporting local families with a child or teenager not expected to reach their 19th birthday.  Shooting Star CHASE currently helps over 500 families living in western London, Surrey and West Sussex.  We are committed to caring for these families.  We are here for every step of their journey, sharing the good times, and helping them through the tough times with practical, nursing and emotional support. Families receive our support free of charge, 365 days a year, in their own homes and communities and at our children’s hospices. With no guaranteed Government funding we must raise £23,000 a day to continue our vital service.

St Luke’s Kenton Grange Hospice                                                                    £2,704

The Hospice provides free end of life care for the people of Harrow  and Brent.  Staff and volunteers work together to enable our patients to achieve the best possible quality of life  and to remain as independent and free from pain as possible during final stages of their illness. 
It cares for patients through its in-patient unit, out-patient clinics, and day care centre, as well as in their own homes through our Hospice at Home and Community Palliative Care Teams.  The Hospice aims to care for the whole patient, meeting their psycho- social and spiritual as well as their physical needs.  It provides an extensive range of therapies and other activities to complement high quality medical and nursing care.
Coming to terms with a serious illness can be difficult and distressing.  Everyone in the family, including friends can be affected, and the hospice and its staff and volunteers provide a warm, friendly and supportive environment in which everyone feels welcome.   The family support team is dedicated to supporting families throughout the illness and into bereavement.
They are proud to offer all services free of charge and rely on the generosity of the community for over 70% of the funding and their work can only continue with the support of the people, companies and organisations that give their time and money to fundraise on their behalf.    Each year we need to raise over £3 million in order to maintain our services  – they have said that the generosity of organisations like ours is very much appreciated.

Combat Stress                                                                                                           £2,000

Combat Stress is the UK’s leading military charity specialising in the care of veterans’ mental health. Founded in 1919, their aim is to ensure that veterans receive the right mental health care, in the right place, at the right time. They provide a number of services including specialist trauma-focused treatment at three short-stay treatment centres; practical and clinical support in the community; and a 24-Hour Helpline.
Their work saves lives and is as vital today as it has ever been. Right now, they are supporting more than 4,800 UK veterans with mental health problems, including 228 veterans who have served in Afghanistan and 589 who served in Iraq. And in the last year alone they have received 1,443 new referrals – a clear indication that demand is not abating.

Heathrow Special Needs Farm (Spelthorn Farm)                                                £2,000

Heathrow Special Needs Farm is a small charitable community farm close to Heathrow Airport.  They provide an environment in which people with special needs and disabilities of all ages can develop and grow in confidence, by working with farm animals.  Activities include horse riding, animal care & welfare and gardening.
It is wholly reliant on charitable support and donations from business concerns, charitable organisations and a number of caring individuals
This support includes sponsoring a Farmyard Friend, becoming a volunteer, buying merchandise and at the moment supporting their Urgent Winter Feed Appeal.

The Wish Centre                                                                                                         £2,000

The Wish Centre provides support and opportunities for women, young people and children who have been victims of abuse, domestic and sexual violence and neglect and for those who are suicidal or self harm.
Self harm is a way of coping with extreme circumstances or emotions such as living with sexual abuse or family violence, entering or leaving care, family break up and bereavement.  There is a spiral of neglect and disadvantage for many children and women.
The Wish Centre provides a safe place that supports and inspires, and our innovative approach is a mix of peer based support, campaigning, youth work, counselling, mentoring, creative and achievement based projects for young people at risk.

Masonic Fishing Charity                                                                                         £2,000

Masonic Fishing Charity Club (MTSFC) has the aim ‘to bring an interactive fishing and countryside experience to people with Special Needs’. This includes disabled and disadvantaged children, young people and adults. Fishing events are held up and down the country and participants invited from Special Needs Schools, Adult Day Centres and similar places to attend. Participants are introduced to fishing by an experienced fishing guide and helpers and lunch is provided for them and their carers or teachers. Middlesex events are held in Syon Park and Angling Projects (Cemex Lakes).

London Air Ambulance                                                                                          £2,000

London’s Air Ambulance is the charity which runs London’s Helicopter Emergency Medical Service.  The service provides pre-hospital medical care to victims of serious injury, at the scene of the incident, throughout London – serving the 10 million people who live, work and commute within the M25. Based at the Royal London Hospital and founded in 1989, the service is unique in that it operates 24/7 with the helicopter running in daylight hours and rapid response cars taking over at night.
The Team, which at all times includes a Senior Trained Trauma Doctor and a specialist trained Paramedic, perform advanced medical interventions, normally only found in the Hospital Emergency Department, in time critical, life threatening situations.  Missions commonly involve serious road traffic collisions, falls from height, industrial accidents, assaults and injuries on the rail network. London’s Air Ambulance has an international reputation for clinical excellence and delivers pioneering procedures which have been adopted across the world.

Aspire                                                                                                                            £1,500

Spinal Cord Injury has a devastating effect on the 1,200 people who become paralysed each year. The individual affected will lose muscle and sensory control and the vast majority become full time wheelchair users for the rest of their lives. Historically, the majority of spinal cord injuries have been sustained by those aged 15 to 40, with men outnumbering women, although increasingly it is affecting older people too. Through its projects and programmes, Aspire offers practical support to the 40,000 people living with a spinal cord injury in the UK so that they can lead fulfilled and independent lives in their homes, with their families, in work places and in leisure time.

Cystic Fibrosis Trust                                                                                               £1,000

There is no doubt that Cystic Fibrosis affects almost every aspect of a person’s life, but it should neither define nor restrict them. We are working towards a future where a person’s life chances and aspirations are not compromised by having CF
We invest in high-quality research to bring forward new treatments for CF and work with healthcare professionals – from doctors and nurses to physiotherapists and dieticians – to ensure excellent, sustainable care, regardless of where people live.
We are there for people with CF and their families whenever they need us. We offer them support, advice and information through our helplines and through our publications and online services.

Harlington Hospice                                                                                                  £1,000
Harlington Hospice as the name suggests is based in Harlington and provides quality care, support and compassion to those suffering with non-curative and life-limiting illness. They run a Hospice at Home Service providing extra care and support to people in their own homes offering end of life care, qualified nurses and auxiliary staff supported by District or Macmillan nurse key workers, care arranged for any period day or night, respite for the carer and much more.
The cost of providing these services is just under £1m with less than 20% from government funding, therefore they rely heavily on the support of the community and business

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