Not unexpectedly this Lodge has an enviable charitable record starting in 1787 when it gifted 25 guineas towards the cost of building the first Masonic Hall in Great Queen Street, London. Only 14 Lodges now exist that possess, and are entitled to display, the commemorative Hall Medal recording that gift; ours proudly suspended from the Worshipful Master's collar.
In 1835 two members of our Lodge originated proposals leading to the foundation of the Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution, followed by other charities to support the Boys' and Girls' schools, the Royal Masonic Hospital (now the New Samaritan Fund) and the RMBI's seventeen Residential Care Homes etc., all now working within the Masonic Charitable Foundation. The Masonic Housing Association runs five sheltered housing schemes providing homes for older people, half being Local Authority nominees who are non-masonic clients.
These Masonic charities are supported by a sequence of Festivals (Appeals), Middlesex currently halfway through its Festival in support of the Masonic Trust for Girls and Boys, having raised over £3m to date. This charity supports about 2,000 children from Masonic families, and also some 10,000 children from non-masonic backgrounds.
In modern times our Lodge has supported every major Masonic appeal and separately contributed to private charities, or individuals, and funded its own RNLI 'D' Type lifeboat based in Newquay, which has saved many lives.
Our latest initiative, 'The Harmony Foundation', enables members to make personal donations and accommodate specific bequests or legacies. So popular has this proven, The Harmony Foundation now has a diversified investment portfolio as part of a carefully structured long term strategy, ensuring that donations continue giving in perpetuity with aspirations to support larger exciting projects in the future. It is this personal and perpetual purpose which has found such favour with donors.
Of the approximately £33,000,000 donated annually by The Grand Charity a third is dispersed to non-masonic charities, particularly for international disaster relief and medical research, with Provinces and Lodges adding further support to individual, local, national and international appeals. Recent donations include a £2.5m CyberKnife for Bart’s Hospital, £2m towards a London Air Ambulance and a pledge of £2.5m towards two new 'super' high turntable ladders for the London Fire Brigade to assist rescue from high rise buildings. Putting this into perspective, these donations do not come from the wider public, just from our members.