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Hartlepool Special Needs Support Group MCF Community Award Winners
To celebrate 300 years of Freemasonry, the Masonic Charitable Foundation held a public vote to decide how to spend £3 million of charity funding. Over 177,000 people cast their votes to support a cause that matters to them: 300 charities across the country benefited from this Tercentenary celebration.
In the Province of Durham there were 8 winners, one of the winners, Hartlepool Special Needs Support Group, were delighted to invite Durham Freemasons to attend the unveiling of their completed new project – the new sensory room, hall audio video and office that MCF community award funding enabled them to complete.
A cutting of the ribbon ceremony to declare the project complete and a demonstration of the new facilities on Sunday 11th February, allowed The Deputy Provincial Grand Master, John Arthur, accompanied by his wife Joan, and The Assistant Provincial Grand Masters, Simon William Walker and John Thompson along with their wives Helen and Andrea respectfully, plus a number of Hartlepool Freemasons, the opportunity to see at first hand the wonderful work of the Hartlepool Special Needs Support Group and offered a chance to see the fruits of the MCF Community Awards Tercentenary Fund at first hand.
Pat Allison, the centre Manager and her son Jamie who is a Trustee of the Group and a Hartlepool Freemason, proudly showcased the fantastic new facility showing the work that has been undertaken and giving some background to the £25,000 Tercentenary award.
Constellation one of the drama groups in the building performed a selection of songs, focusing on the sensory use of lights and music during the performance. The smiles on the audience’s faces was testament to the hard work and joy the performance conveyed.
Hartlepool Special Needs Support Group has been running for 28 years with them acquiring their own premises in 1999. They support families with children and young adults who have various profound physical or learning disabilities with varying complex needs, including life limiting conditions.
Throughout their 28 years in operation, they have increased membership from three families to well over 100 families who access facilities regularly, each year. Over the year family circumstances and services change, either with the group or other bodies; this is made up of present, new and old members. The services they provide are focused on supporting their beneficiaries to help them reach their full potential by increasing their opportunities and life prospects, therefore improving their chances in life.
TLC Teddy Initiative……
“thank you Freemasons for the thousands of teddies donated to children’s casualty departments”
Community Support Grants…..
“The grant from Durham Freemasons has made an enormous difference to our service users”
Provincial Annual Meeting….
“The Provincial annual meeting is one of the highlights of my year, it’s great to meet everyone and support all those being rewarded for merit”….
“My husband would be so proud that you still contact me so many years after his death, thank you for remembering me”
“The Provincial annual meeting is one of the highlights of my year, it’s great to meet everyone and support all those being rewarded for merit”
The Royal Arch…..
“I feel that I have a much better understanding of the whole Masonic story after joining the Royal Arch”
What have you gained?
“I’ve made wonderful friendships with people from all walks of life who I wouldn’t otherwise have even met”
In respect to the TLC Teddy initiative
“A child patient copes with medical treatment so much better when they’ve been given a TLC teddy”
What Freemasonry has done for you?
“The teachings of the masonic ceremonies helped me to be a better father, better husband, better son and better neighbour”What Freemasonry has done for you
One of the best things I have ever done…
“Along with getting married, the birth of my children and Sunderland winning the FA Cup, becoming a Freemason is one of the best things I’ve ever done”