For Freemasons, for families, for everyone

Funded entirely through the generosity of Freemasons and their families, the Masonic Charitable Foundation is one of the largest grant-making charities in the country.

Most of the support provided by the Masonic Charitable Foundation takes the form of financial grants to individuals and families to assist with daily living costs.  The MCF also award grants to provide specific items or services.

A range of health and care needs, including medical and dental treatments, counselling and mobility aids or home adaptations are supported, with funding also available for respite, residential, nursing and dementia care.

Their professional Advice and Support team offers confidential and practical guidance about the support available from the Masonic Charitable Foundation and many other organisations.

As well as the support given to Freemasons and their families, the Masonic Charitable Foundation awards millions of pounds each year to local and national charities that help vulnerable people, advance medical research and provide opportunities for young people.

The MCF also help to fund vital services such as hospices and air ambulances and regularly contribute to worldwide appeals for disaster relief.  In total, the support given helps to improve the lives of thousands of people every year in England, Wales and internationally.

A good number of Nautilus members have chosen to donate to the MCF on a regular basis through the Continuous Giving Scheme. By setting up a direct debit, the brethren of Nautilus give small regular amounts each month. Using this method, over the past four years, over ten thousand pounds has been raised for charity by Nautilus members.

Find out more at the MCF website

Durham 2021 Festival

Once every eleven years each Province in the country enters what is known as “The Festival System”.  When a Province is in Festival, all the Lodges are asked to make a concerted effort to raise money for the Masonic Charitable Foundation.  In 2016 the latest Durham Festival was launched with a duration of five years. The timing of the Festival launch meant that Durham is the last Province to raise money through the Festival System for The Royal Masonic Trust For Girls And Boys (RMTGB).

In April 2016, just four months after the launch of the Festival, The Royal Masonic Trust For Girls And Boys joined together with the three other Masonic charities. The other three charities being The Grand Charity, The Royal Masonic Benevolent Institute and The Masonic Samaritan Fund. The four charities came together to form the Masonic Charitable Foundation. The charity derives no income from outside funding such as the National Lottery. The majority of money spent comes from Masonic donations especially the Festival system.

Why are Festivals Required?

On average just over 67% of the four Charities’ income is derived from Festival Appeals. The Charities are often faced with the misconception that additional donations are not needed due to the income they receive from their endowments; however this is not the case.

In 2013, the Charities spent over £29m supporting beneficiaries, whilst income from investments amounted to only £3m. This clearly demonstrates how much the Charities rely on successful Festival Appeals to continue their life-changing work.

Festival Awards 

When the Durham 2021 Festival was launched back in 2016, each Lodge in the Province was given a target to raise based on the number of members they had at time. A series of awards was also announced to give an incentive for Lodges to aim for. Any Lodge which projected reaching 33% of their target would receive the Bronze Award. By donating 66% of their target, a Lodge would receive the Silver Award. The Gold Award was received by any Lodge which reached and donated their actual target. Any Lodge which went further and donated 130% of their target would receive the Platinum Award. 

At the Installation Meeting , back in October 2018, the incoming Worshipful Master and Lodge Charity Steward, WBro Ian Wardle was the proud recipient of the Platinum Award from the Provincial Grand Master, RWBro John Arthur. 

Still Time To Donate

Over £2.5 million has been raised throughout the Province for the Festival.  The way things are looking at the moment, the amount raised by the time the Festival ends will exceed the target set at the start. However, the fundraising and donations still need to continue.  The easiest way to raise funds must be through Easy Fundraising. This gives you a way of raising money for the Festival without it costing you any more time or money. By signing up, every time you buy a product or service online from a supporting company will raise either a fixed amount or a percentage  of the money spent for the Festival. 

A proud moment for WBro Ian Wardle as the Provincial Grand Master presents him with the Durham 2021 Platinum Award.

TLC Teddies

TLC Teddies is a scheme which gives a small teddy bear, at the medical staff’s discretion,  to children at accident and emergency departments and child hospices throughout Durham to help overcome distress. The bear helps the staff by providing a distraction to the child. The use of the teddies has been proved to have beneficial effects for children admitted to A&E units by relieving their distress and alleviating the fear of being treated by complete strangers. They also act as a tool to help staff befriend the child as well as a reward for being brave. It has also been found that the medical staff can perform tasks i.e. injections on the Teddy first making the child far less scared and more willing to go next when Teddy does not cry. So far, within the Province of Durham, over 94000 teddy bears have been donated.