Charity and benevolence are close to the heart of all Freemasons. Supporting the Forest of Galtres Lodge in its fundraising activities is seen as an important role. However, donations are entirely voluntary and care is taken to ensure every brother gives only what they can afford.

At our ‘festive boards’ - the meal following our regular Lodge meeting - and at most of our social events, raffles are held. These remain our main source of fundraising, and we are proud to say that our Lodge has donated over £5000 to both Masonic and non-Masonic charities over recent years.

Masonic charities are funded solely by its members, with no monies being actively sought from members of the public. Nevertheless it is a little known fact Freemasons are second only to the National Lottery in charity fund raising in the UK.

The focus of our Lodge's charitable activities can be split into five areas:

1. Local Charity

Looking after local good causes is paramount to our Lodge and we have contributed to many fine causes including:

  • sponsoring the shirts of the Easingwold Football team
  • supporting a local Olympic hopeful in his training
  • helping the stroke charity ‘Speakability’ in its work locally
  • supporting the visits of ‘Children from Chernobyl’ to obtain medical treatment etc.
  • supporting the ‘Hospice @ Home’ service provided by St Leonards. 

Each Master in his year of office can choose a local charity to receive the Lodge’s support. Our current master is supporting the ‘Boot shop’ in Easingwold and its work helping people with Learning disabilities to learn new skills and live independent lives

2. The Masonic Samaritan Fund

This charitable fund cares for and supports Freemasons who are in need of medical , dental, respite, and mobility care. This extends to the Lodge member, his wife, family and dependants, and in particular to widows of deceased Freemasons.

Grants are given where treatment is necessary that cannot be provided under the NHS, or where long waiting lists make the suffering of a member distressing. It is not available for purely cosmetic purposes or where a member just prefers ‘private’ treatment etc.

3. Masonic Grand Charity

This is a grant making charity dedicated to supporting people in need. Established in 1980 is has supported both freemasons and their dependants (as well as non-Masonic charities) with grants totalling over £100 million. For example, whenever there is a major disaster in the world the Grand Charity is always one of the first organisations to step in. The MGC has vast experience in helping the Red Cross and other disaster relief organisations. Donations for medical research, air ambulance services and hospice services are also commonly made.

4. Royal Masonic Trust for Boys and Girls

This Trust supports the children of Freemasons who because of distress in families following death, disability or the absence of a parent results in financial hardship. It also aims to ensure that they can continue their education and training to enable them to succeed in life.

5. Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution

The RMBI has been caring for our older Brethren for more than 160 years. It operates over 17 care homes across England & Wales, providing residential, nursing, respite and dementia care. They also operate 1 home for adults with learning difficulties and 2 warden assisted sites.

Additionally the RMBI organises annual holidays and home improvement loans for those Brethren in need.