Charity is a primary reason why people join Freemasonry. The three Great Principles by which we stand are Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth. Freemasons are taught to practice charity and to care, not only for their own, but also for the community as a whole – both by charitable giving, and by voluntary efforts and works as individuals.
From its earliest days, Freemasonry has been concerned with the care of orphans, the sick and the aged. This work continues today. In addition, large sums are given to national and local charities.
Masonic charity is exercised at every level: individual Lodges make gifts and give aid to their own communities, every Province also gives large sums of money to regional causes and nationally there are the four central Masonic charities.
Support of Brunel Students
The brethren at Ruislip St Martin’s work closely with Brunel University by spreading the word about Freemasonry and supporting a number of their students through their graduate courses.
Worshipful Master, W. Bro. Peter Jones accompanied by Lodge Charity Steward W. Bro. Peter Binstead, presented a cheque for £1,300 to students Harry Stiles and Reece Kelly.
Both lads are working on water purification projects for their engineering degrees.
Specifically they are working in collaboration with a Social Enterprise in Mexico called Isla Urbana. The company’s focus is to help low income families to access inexpensive clean water.
Harry has devised a rainwater harvesting system which will enable families to catch, clean and store water for domestic use eg washing and cleaning.
Whilst Reece has come up with a cheap method of purifying this water for drinking which uses materials that can be sourced locally.
It was necessary for them to travel to Mexico to work alongside Isla Urbana to test their concepts and gain some primary research and results.
The £1,300 was to be used to purchase two return flights to Mexico City so that both lads could further their projects. This money came from the Middlesex Provincial Relief fund following an application from the Lodge.
Boost for Church Security
Worshipful Master W Bro Peter Jones hands over cheques to Fr Simon Evans, Vicar of St Martin’s Church, Ruislip, to cover the cost of upgrading the surveillance cameras and control equipment installed to keep the church and its congregation secure.
With Fr Simon to receive the donation is Church Warden Judith Roberts, and W Bros Martin Cartwright and George Sowemimo, long term members both of the Church and of the Lodge.
The cheques, amounting to some £1796, include £1500 from the Middlesex Masonic Charitable Trust, with the balance coming directly from the Lodge to cover the VAT.
When the Lodge made the Trustees aware of the urgent need to address increasing concerns about church safety, following a number of serious attacks on religious communities both in the UK and in Europe, the response was “send us some figures and we’ll see what we can do”.
Founded in 1984, Ruislip St Martin’s Lodge included many parishioners, plus parents from the local BWI School. The Lodge retains its strong association with St Martins’ Church, with several current Brethren still active members of the congregation
Lodge Helps Kickstart Safari Seat
A £500 donation from Ruislip St Martins helped Jana Deeble, a Ugandan student from Brunel University, to produce a revolutionary wheelchair capable of covering rough terrain in remote parts of the African countryside and in other parts of the Third World.
Ruislip St Martins’ Lodge is an established supporter of research initiatives at the University as part of the Grand Lodge Universities Scheme. The £500 donation allowed Jana to make a research trip where he could try various designs to see which worked.
With additional funding from Kickstarter, a global fund-raising initiative the Safariseat has changed the lives of many people in Africa. Early support of the project by the Lodge has led to additional funding in excess of £90K.
Support for Engineering Design Students
The Lodge has a £1500 grant for three years from The Middlesex Provincial Relief Fund to support Engineering Design students at Brunel University with their degree course projects. On 31 January 2018 four students pitched their degree course design ideas to Worshipful Master Peter Jones and Charity Steward Peter Binstead.
The two students selected were Rheza Imansyah from Thailand who has invented a water powered lamp to be used on a desk to assist poor rural children in South East Asia to carry on their studies in the evening, and Josh King who has a project which enables people who find themselves in dangerous or distressing situations to summon help from a named colleague or friend.
Rheza’s lamp has a turbine that can be recharged in running water. His idea is to make the lamp from local easily sourced materials in Asia. He has done all his technical research and now needs money to build and test a prototype. The money will be spent on materials, travelling around to suppliers etc. This innovative project could bring great benefits to poor Asian communities.
Josh’s idea is to expand the named contact to staff in pubs, operators of public transport etc. The details are that you download an app that he is creating, and you name the person you wish to inform if you get into difficult situations. This idea could be a commercial project as well as something that could be taken up by Social Service or Charities to give to their clients as another layer of protection.
W Bros Peter Jones and Peter Binstead agreed to fund these two students in the sum of £750 each. An application has been submitted to the trustees of the Middlesex Provincial Relief Fund for the release of this year’s grant.