Every year, the Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF), the Freemasons’ charity, supports hundreds of local and national charities with funding of £5.5 million that encourages opportunity, promotes independence and improves wellbeing for vulnerable and disadvantaged members of our local communities. Every grant made, and every life changed as a result, is because of the generosity of Freemasons, their families and friends.
£5.5 million is an incredible figure and one that Freemasonry should be proud of – but what does this total reflect? Here are just two of the many initiatives supported by your donations:
Last year, we launched a £1 million five-year partnership with national family charity Home-Start UK to fund their ‘Big Hopes, Big Futures’ programme, which aims to get children from disadvantaged backgrounds school-ready. On average, one in three children start primary school without reaching a similar level of development to many of their classmates. This project will support a network of trained volunteers to help families with young children to ensure they have the same opportunities as their peers when they start school.
Freemasonry, through the MCF, has also given £255,000 to Kidney Research UK to fund three PhD research studentships including Research Postgraduate, Corinna Brockhaus’.
“In simple terms, my research will be looking at kidney transplant rejection through virus blocking. The BK virus harmlessly exists in a healthy person, but causes problems in some kidney transplant patients as the medicines taken to prevent transplant rejection allow the virus to grow uncontrollably. There are no effective treatments for BK infection, other than reducing the anti-rejection medications, which then means rejection is more likely,” says Corinna. “Hopefully my research into new therapeutics against the BK virus will lead to future treatments.”
By nurturing the talent of young scientists like Corinna and providing the funding necessary for them to become experts in our fields, Freemasonry is enabling the research breakthroughs of tomorrow.
See the impact in your local area
The MCF can proudly say that every Province has benefitted from its charitable funding. Discover the impact that Freemasonry, through the MCF, has had on your local community by visiting our interactive Impact Report. From local hospices to air ambulances, medical research projects to local charities – see how Freemasonry has made a difference to the causes you care about.
Supporting communities through Covid-19
When the coronavirus pandemic sent millions of households into lockdown, UGLE and the MCF put in place numerous initiatives to ensure those most vulnerable were supported through the crisis. As well as the Freemasons’ COVID-19 Community Fund which has raised over £1 million to support frontline initiatives, the MCF has given £750,000 to three leading charities which are working hard to alleviate the negative impact of COVID-19 on those they support:
Mental health charity, Mind, received £250,000 to help respond to the surge in demand for mental health services as the pandemic progressed. Over one million people accessed Mind’s online support resources and coronavirus information when social distancing came into effect, showing support for people’s mental wellbeing is needed now more than ever.
The pandemic has highlighted a significant ‘digital divide’ in the UK which is impacting many children’s learning progression. Children’s charity, Buttle UK is using their £250,000 grant to equip vulnerable and disadvantaged children with the technology needed to continue learning remotely, as well as covering other costs to keep children engaged, such as books and games.
Age UK also received £250,000, to support older people who are most vulnerable to the virus and its social and financial consequences. The grant contributed to Age UK’s ‘Emergency Coronavirus Appeal’ and is helping older people with expert information and advice, friendship services and other practical assistance.
Explore our interactive map to discover how Freemasonry has responded to COVID-19 in your local community