The Provincial Charity Awareness Committee succeeds the Charity Forum to concentrate on assisting Lodges and Chapters to raise money for Masonic and non-Masonic charities.
Its role also includes informing Charity Stewards of the activities of Masonic and non-Masonic charities within the Province, or engaging charities that are involved in or assisting people who live in the former county of Middlesex.
Middlesex Masons traditionally and regularly give very generously. Less well known is that there are fewer requests for assistance from Middlesex Lodges and Chapters than almost any other Province in England and Wales.
It is the Committee’s role to promote our own Middlesex-based Masonic charities and the main Masonic charities to members of the Province through Lodge and Chapter Charity Stewards. This is done via a regular newsletter to Charity Stewards as well as a regular feature updating all members of the Province in the “Mercury” of what is happening in Middlesex.
On occasions the Provincial Charity Awareness Committee arranges central meetings but more frequent local meetings are arranged by the individual Middlesex Centres. From time to time special speakers are invited from both central Masonic and local non-Masonic charities.
The Provincial Charity Awareness Committee provides the support that Charity Stewards need from their peers in the work that they do. This work is the core activity in a caring fraternity. An example of the Committee’s success in this area was demonstrated by the launch of the Charity Stewards’ Handbook in September 2012.
The Provincial Charity Awareness Committee organised and hosted a major Provincial event to launch a comprehensive information pack, designed to provide Charity Stewards with the information they need to be fully effective in their role. The event was attended by the Pro Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro. Roger Croome, as well as representatives from the MPMCT, MPRF and MBF.
This landmark event was a major success and demonstrated the significant and beneficial impact the Committee has made on Provincial charity issues since its inception.
One of the Committee’s other important roles is to encourage claimants to apply for grants and assistance, and to streamline the administrative processes that individuals or groups have to go through when applying for charitable relief. The Committee has been involved in creating and making available a single, “omnibus” form that simplifies the application process, yet at the same time maintains the confidentiality of the applicant’s details and circumstances.
This has been another of the Committee’s achievements this year. To date, many Lodges and Chapters have used the new form and the feedback received has been very positive. The form is available through the Charity page on the Provincial website.
The Provincial Charity Awareness Committee stresses the importance of Gift Aid. Every member and guest, as individuals, should be given the opportunity to use, if they so wish, a Gift Aid envelope for their alms donation so that they may enhance the value of their gift for charitable use by 25%. Therefore, every Lodge and Chapter should make provision for this, the easiest method being to have a Relief Chest.
If any Charity Steward, Treasurer or Secretary (or any other member) has any concerns or questions about using the envelopes, or Gift Aid or the Relief Chest scheme, or wishes to discuss why it might not be appropriate to make use of the envelopes, then Mike Cumper, Provincial Grand Charity Steward would be very pleased to hear from them.
Further details about the role of the Provincial Charity Awareness Committee may be obtained from the Secretary.
The Members of the Committee are:
W.Bro. David Allan PSGD, AProvGM
E.Comp. Martyn P. Farrell PAGDC, 2ndProvGPrin
W.Bro. Derek J. Mauri PProvSGW (Middx), P2ndProvGPrin
Provincial Grand Charity Steward (Craft)
W.Bro. Mike Cumper
Provincial Grand Charity Steward (Royal Arch)
W.Bro. Adrian Howorth PGStB, PAGDC (RA)
W.Bro. Paul Sully PProvGSwdB
W.Bro. Sam Baqui PProvAGStB, LGR
61 West Avenue, Finchley,
London N3 1AU.
Tel: 07985 050020
Local committees of the Provincial Charity Awareness Committee are based at each of the five Middlesex Centres. The respective Centre Chairmen are:
W.Bro. John Briggs PProvSGD
Tel: 020 8420 6507 / 07883 093294
W.Bro. Peter Rider PPrJGW
Tel: 020 8372 9785 / 07769 654674
W.Bro. Andy Wright ProvJGD
Tel: 07919 505557
W.Bro. Robert King PProvSGD
Tel: 01483 793888/ 07979 701662
W.Bro. Bill Stanton PProvSGD
Tel: 07545 045044
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