One of the key characteristics of Freemasons and Freemasonry is charity and the principle of giving your time or money to help those around you; whether this is in the Lodge, in the local community or nationally and internationally.
As an organisation we are one of the largest fundraisers for charity in the UK; raising over £33 million a year, which is distributed via the Masonic Charitable Foundation.
At a Provincial level, our Lodges work hard to serve the communities around them; regularly making donations or organising events to support some of the smaller local charities that, more often than not, the members themselves have personal experiences with.
All our Lodges have a Charity Steward and Almoner, whose job it is to co-ordinate their charitable undertakings and, just as important, to ensure that the members and their families are also taken care of.
The Provincial Charity Steward
The Provincial Charity Steward has the responsibility of developing and maintaining the awareness within the Province for fundraising, and providing relevant and up-to-date information with the intention of stimulating the enthusiasm of the brethren. The provision of current information from the Masonic Charitable Foundation is a vital part of enthusing the giving process, as the brethren must be kept aware of the importance of their regular giving to this organisation.
In addition, he should assist the Executive to raise the profile of Freemasonry in the community by identifying worthy projects for support, and building relationships with local charitable organisations.
He should visit Lodges as often as possible, to support the work of Lodge Charity Stewards, and be a focal point for advice, assistance and support; providing guidance as far as their fund-raising ideas, bearing in mind current legislation and best practises.
In addition, during a ‘Festival’ period he should work closely with the Festival Committee and the nominated charity to ensure that over the Festival period the maximum amount is raised is achieved for that charity.