Members of Reading Old Boys Lodge support Masonic and non-Masonic charities as part of their charitable giving. Members of the Lodge have also asked the Berkshire Masonic Charity to support various local organisations, and made donations to the larger Grand Charity organisations supporting more widespread charitable causes.
The Berkshire Masonic Charity
The Berkshire Masonic Charity was launched in 1987 with an appeal to provide capital for a fund, the income from which would be used for Masonic and Non-Masonic charitable purposes within the Province. Some £1.5 million capital is now earning an income with which to fulfil these purposes, and during the time it has been running, grants have been made in excess of £777,000 to 971 recipients. Reading Old Boys Lodge is able to make applications for support on behalf of individuals or worthy local causes.
In addition to supporting the Berkshire Masonic Charity, the Lodge supports Berkshire-wide fundraising appeals for one of the four Grand charities listed below.
Appeals for funds are made within Berkshire about every 11 years. The last appeal (or festival) has just finished this year (2011) when Berkshire masons supported the RMBI by raising over £2.25m - donating the highest per capita sum in the history of the Charity. The last time Berkshire Masons raised money for the RMBI was in 1973, which was the last record for the highest per capita donation.
During this latest festival for the RMBI, Reading Old Boys donated more than £10,000.
The RMBI (Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution)
which supports the elderly. At one time the RMBI would only take fit persons, but now they have special nursing wings as more cases need special attention. We are fortunate to have one of the RMBI’s home next to our centre at Sindlesham.They are about to start building a dementia unit.
The Grand Charity
is a grant-making charity, which is funded by Freemasons and their families. Last year it gave grants totalling over £5 million to support people in need and fund the work of charities helping the wider community. It makes grants to fund the work of many national charities and their important activities to support people in need Every year it provide financial support to around 1,700 Masons, or their dependants, who are experiencing hardship.
The Royal Masonic Trust for Girls and Boys
The prime object of the Trust is support for the children of distressed or deceased Freemasons, the aim being to give them the start in life they would have received had distress not befallen their families. The second objective is to provide help to children not connected to Masonic families and to support charities connected with children.
The Masonic Samaritan Fund
which provides support for sick and infirm Freemasons, their families and dependants who are in need. The Fund gives relief to those applicants who cannot afford the full cost of private healthcare and who are unable to obtain their treatment on the UK's National Health Service without undue delay or hardship.