Assistant Provincial Grand Master Robert Wright had the great pleasure recently to present a cheque from the Masonic Charitable Foundation to local care charity Queenscourt Hospice in Southport.
Robert met with Jane Royds the Director of Non-Clinical Services and Carolyn Gorman Fundraising Manager prior to handing over the cheque for £2,431. Both of them were very interested to find out more from Robert about Masonry in Southport and the surrounding areas. They said they are always surprised at the very generous cheques they receive from a number of Freemason lodges. Robert explained that in Southport there are over 850 Masons who belong to 23 different lodges, all of whom will have a reason to donate cheques to charities and this is typically done once a year at the meeting where a new master of the lodge is installed. Robert went on to say that all of the money donated is raised by the members themselves and unlike other groups Freemasons don’t go out and collect from the public to give to charitable organisations.
Robert then asked about the work that Queenscourt Hospice do and Jane was very happy to announce that their Silver Jubilee year has been very successful with a number of fundraising activities taking place. Queenscourt Hospice is a local charity that provides support for the people of Southport, Formby and West Lancashire. They care for patients with serious illnesses, enabling them to achieve the best possible quality of life. They help to do this both in the hospice and at home through their In-Patient Unit, Queenscourt Connect and Queenscourt at Home Services.
Jane said that to operate Queenscourt requires over 100 members of staff, this includes doctors, nurses, healthcare assistants, physiotherapists and many other roles. Even with all of these staff members however, Jane said that the work they do would not be possible without their huge team of volunteers who work in their shops, help out around the hospice, answer the phones, maintain their gardens, manage support groups and set up events to help raise money. However, they are always looking for more help.
There are still a few activities on the cards; the Lights of Love Appeal where people are asked to dedicate a light to a loved one to help your local hospice. There is the annual ‘Santa Sprint’ taking place at the weekend and their biggest events the ‘Star Trekk’, which is their famous seven-mile sponsored night walk which just keeps on getting bigger. This year they are aiming to get over 1,000 walkers to join in which is always a real community event. The walk is open to everybody and they are inviting men, women and children (as long as they have an adult joining them!) to come and walk with them. They are also looking for volunteers to help marshal the event, so if someone would like to get involved but isn’t able to do the walk you can still help out.
You can find out more about what they do by following them on Facebook or visiting their website;- www.queenscourt.org.uk