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Money was presented to Children’s Hospice South West (CHSW) and North Devon Hospice (NDH) from the Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF) and the Devonshire Freemasons, and will be used to help provide vital respite care in the area.

NDH received £1,330 in support of its hospice at Deer Park in Barnstaple, while CHSW was given £1,395 in support of its Little Bridge House children’s hospice in Fremington.

The MCF grants were just two of 227 given to hospices around the country from Freemasons. In total £600,000 will be donated to hospices all over England and Wales this year.

Contributions from Freemasons to hospices have exceeded £15 million in England and Wales since 1984, and the Devonshire Freemasons, as well as the 131 Devonshire Lodges, have been major supporters of CHSW and NDH for many years.

CHSW receive cheques from Devonshire Freemasons

Presenting cheques to both charities at Little Bridge House, Devonshire Provincial Grand Master, Ian Kingsbury, who was accompanied by Charles Yelland, one of his assistants, said the Provincial Grand Lodge was honoured to support North Devon’s two hospice charities.

“They do so much to stand with local families going through the most difficult of times and we are so grateful to have them on our doorsteps,”

he said.

“It is of huge comfort to know that these two special charities are there for us all should we ever need them and we hope this recent grant will help support that work.”

Accepting the grant on behalf of CHSW, fundraising assistant Gubs Hayer said the generous grant would help CHSW continue to provide vital support to families facing unimaginable challenges.

He said:

“We’re very grateful to the Provincial Grand Lodge of Devonshire Freemasons for helping us to provide respite for the whole family, including a sibling service for brothers and sisters, emergency support, end-of-life care, and a bereavement service for as long as it is needed.”

Receiving the cheque on behalf of NDH, fundraiser Kate Kilburn added:

“We are delighted to be receiving this kind donation from the Freemasons and are very grateful for their continued and generous support of North Devon Hospice.
“This grant will mean that we can continue to be there for patients and their loved ones, providing round the clock care and support in patients’ homes or at the hospice. We are utterly reliant on the generosity of our community and thank the Freemasons very much for their wonderful support.”

W. Bro Yelland also presented both charities with teddy bears that can be given to children receiving support at the hospices. The Teddies for Loving Care (TLC), funded with donations from Freemasons, have a heart-shaped nose and are designed to help bring some comfort to poorly children or those with a poorly family member. To date, more than 65,000 have been given to children in hospitals and hospices in Devon, while three million have been distributed country-wide.