Lifelites has received an incredible donation of £141,423 from the Mark Benevolent Fund, which will change the lives of thousands of life-limited and disabled children across the country
The Mark Benevolent Fund is the official charity of The Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons, a registered charity that began in 1868 as an efficient way to donate money to the charities of the Mark Master Masons.
Lifelites donates assistive technology to over 10,000 life-limited and disabled children in hospices across the country, and this vital funding will support a brand new project being launched by the charity this year – the Tech Trunk.
The Tech Trunk is a solution for Hospice at Home services across the country that deliver palliative and respite care for children out in the community. The portable trunks enable hospice staff to take the Lifelites technology with them wherever they go, giving children the opportunity to have access to life-changing technology in their own home.
The trunks will include accessible, portable technology such as a Virtual Reality Headset, specialist iPads, games consoles and an Eyegaze, which enables children to use a computer just with the movement of their eyes. All of this technology gives these children the opportunity to play, be creative, control something for themselves and communicate, for as long as it is possible.
This funding will also help Lifelites to donate Interactive Entertainment Hubs, Mobile Magic Carpets, and other technology as well as vital training for children’s hospice staff on how to use it.
Simone Enefer-Doy, Chief Executive of Lifelites, said: ‘Our small team works tirelessly to raise the funds we so desperately need, and to have this unbelievably generous gift from the Mark Benevolent Fund is a complete game-changer for Lifelites.
‘It will help us provide technology to thousands of children across the country, children who don’t have the same opportunities that we do. Every moment is precious, and thanks to this donation we can help these children and their families make the most of every second.’
Darren Coleman-Heald, Charities Manager at the Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons, said: ‘We are delighted to have joined forces with Lifelites in this all-important project that reaches deep in to the heart of your community giving enjoyment and stimulation to life-limited and disabled children.
'Our 36,000 members will be pleased to know that their donations are being used wisely by helping those in need across the UK.’
In a trek of 16 hours and 33 minutes Keith, a member of Astral Lodge in Grimsby, recorded almost 87,000 steps, burned off 4,300 calories, and climbed almost 4,000 feet.
He was following the White Rose Walk, a long-distance walk set up in 1968 by the Yorkshire Wayfarers. Its start point is the Yorkshire village of Kilburn, which he left at 10.20pm bound for Roseberry Topping, a National Trust property in the neighbouring county of Cleveland.
The walk is completed by touching the ‘trig’ point at the summit of Roseberry Topping. By the time he got there Keith had has raised £1,960 for the charity, but had pulled a calf muscle with four miles yet to go. ‘That slowed me considerably,’ he said. ‘But I knew people had committed money, and that thought was my incentive to carry on and make sure I finished the walk.’
Nevertheless, it was ‘job done’, since the objective is to complete the distance in less than 24 hours, which Keith did with time to spare. But the sight that greeted him was really unexpected. ‘At the top of Roseberry Topping there was a group of Royal Marines with a rowing machine raising money for Help the Heroes. I declined to take part,’ he said.
Even though the walk was officially over, Keith still had a couple of miles to go to meet his lift, which whisked him off for a couple of pints of Guinness and a hot bath. ‘But I’m still accepting donations,’ he said. 'I am happy to take a cheque posted to me at 24 Gloria Way, Grimsby DN37 9SW.'
Keith intends to hand over the money to Lifelites raised when he visits Grand Lodge for the next Quarterly Communications meeting in September 2019. The charity donates specialist assistive technology packages for children and young people suffering life-limiting illnesses, allowing them to be creative, control something for themselves and communicate, for as long as it is possible. Every baby and children’s hospice throughout the UK benefits, which means the charity has reached more than 10,000 children.
Provinces across the country have helped raise in excess of £55,000 for children’s charity Lifelites by taking part in ‘Lift for Lifelites returns’ – a 3,000 mile road trip aimed at raising the charity’s profile, as well as the vital funds it needs to carry out its work
This is the second time the charity have staged this wacky fundraiser which sees its Chief Executive, Simone Enefer-Doy, travel to a landmark in every Province in England, Wales and some of the Crown Dependencies in just 15 days. To reach each of the 48 photoshoots, Simone asked Freemasons in every Province to give her a lift in a weird and wonderful variety of transport, and they didn’t disappoint.
Among her 80 lifts were a genuine Thai Tuk Tuk, a classic Rolls-Royce, a paddle steamer, a wartime motorcycle sidecar, a Lamborghini, no less than three steam trains and an electric tram, to name but a few. Famous sites visited on the trip included the beautiful Bleinheim Palace, the Heights of Abraham, Lake Windermere and the National Space Centre.
Simone said: ‘It was a real whistle stop tour and I’ve been blown away by the incredible generosity of Freemasons across the country; this event wouldn’t have been possible without them. After the success of last year, I couldn’t wait to see what everyone had come up with.
'It was wonderful to meet so many loyal supporters as well as lots of new friends along the way, and great to have the opportunity tell them more about Lifelites and other ways they could help us with our work for local children.’
The challenge has raised over £55,000 to date which will go towards the charity’s work donating and maintaining assistive technology for life-limited and disabled children in children’s hospices across the British Isles.
Simone explained: ‘This technology can be life-changing for these children. It helps them escape the confines of their conditions and do things they never thought possible, even things that we take for granted like playing a game with their brothers and sisters or telling their parents that they love them. We simply couldn’t do what we do without money raised from our supporters and we are very grateful.’
You can read about all the organisations who were involved in the challenge on the Lifelites website here.
After the huge success of last year’s event, Lifelites Chief Executive Simone Enefer-Doy is once again taking on an epic nationwide road trip to raise money for life-limited and disabled children in hospices
Simone left the office on Great Queen Street on the morning of 10 May 2019 in a London Fire Brigade BMW i3, kindly organised by the Metropolitan Grand Lodge of London. She was also accompanied by Widows Sons outriders and a classic Ronart.
Dubbed ‘Lift for Lifelites returns’, the 3,000 mile trip will see Simone visit a landmark in every Province in England and Wales in a variety of weird and wonderful modes of transport provided by Freemasons, Widows Sons and other volunteers.
Landmarks will include Bleinheim Palace, Goodwood and the National Space Centre, as well as some slightly quirkier venues such as the British Lawnmower Museum. Confirmed modes of transport so far include a Tuk Tuk, a steam train, a Lamborghini, a quadbike, a DeLorean, a classic Rolls Royce and many more.
All the money raised will go towards the charity’s work donating and maintaining life-changing technology to life-limited and disabled children in hospices across the British Isles. This technology gives them the opportunity to play be creative, control something for themselves and communicate, for as long as it is possible.
Simone said: 'We are a very small, but very hard working charity and are determined to do all that we can to impact the lives of children who don’t have the same opportunities that we do due to the confines of their condition. Every moment is precious for these children and their families, and we want to make sure they can make the most of every second. This is only possible with the support of the Provinces.
'We were absolutely blown away by the support we received last year. Provinces pulled out all the stops and we can’t thank them enough. Will this year be even bigger and better?'
A £5,000 donation by West Lancashire Freemasons to the charity Lifelites has allowed them to provide a package of interactive technology for patients at local children’s hospice Claire House in Liverpool
The grant to Lifelites was made during a national fund-raising event that saw the charity’s Chief Executive Simone Enefer-Doy call at Blackpool as part of a national tour.
Simone was joined on a recent visit to the hospice by Assistant Provincial Grand Master Derek Parkinson, Royal Arch Assistant to the Provincial Grand Principals’ Sam Robinson and local Liverpool Group Chairman Mark Matthews, who all had the opportunity to see the difference the technology is making in enhancing the lives of the children who are cared for at Claire House.
One of the technology packages they saw being used was the ‘Magic Carpet’, which is a fantastic sensory learning tool with the capacity to engage people of all ages and abilities. The system projects interactive games and images on to the floor that users can play with and control simply by moving on or over the projected image.
After watching baby Phoenix interacting with the ‘Magic Carpet’, Derek Parkinson remarked: 'It’s very humbling to see the dedication of the staff here at the hospice and we can’t sufficiently express our gratitude for the incredible work that they do.'
'Giving aid and support to charities within the local and wider community is central to Freemasonry. It’s marvellous to see at first hand what the money we have donated is achieving and we thank both LifeLites and Claire House for this opportunity.'
It’s the journey that matters
Via Rolls-Royce, camper van, horse and cart, speedboat and tandem bicycle, Lifelites chief executive Simone Enefer-Doy travelled 2,500 miles in two weeks to raise the profile of this hard-working charity
Providing life-changing assistive technology, Lifelites helps the 10,000 children and young people in hospices across the British Isles live their short lives to the full. On 25 May 2018, the charity’s chief executive, Simone Enefer-Doy, set off on an epic road, air and river trip to spread the word and raise funds.
The 2,500-mile challenge, called Lift for Lifelites, was to take in 47 famous landmarks in England and Wales in just 14 days. For each leg of the journey, Simone received a lift from Provincial supporters in an eclectic mix of transportation. After setting an initial target of raising £50,000 for Lifelites, the total now stands at over £104,000. Simone says she has been astounded at the support and generosity she encountered as she travelled around the country.
‘Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that so many people would come out to meet me on my journey and support my challenge. We have received a terrific welcome wherever we have gone, and it really spurred me on to continue whenever I felt myself flagging. I would like to thank everyone – drivers, donors and venues – for helping to make Lift for Lifelites happen. We couldn’t have done it without you.’
Hampshire and Isle of Wight Freemasons have donated over £20,000 to 31 charities at a celebration evening at Farnborough Masonic Centre on 4th May
All the donations distributed to the charities had been raised from individual members of the area’s lodges. Of the many and varied methods of raising funds are raffles, special events and personal donations, all with the specific aim of distributing to local charities.
The evening was hosted by William Withers, the Assistant Provincial Grand Master of Hampshire and Isle of Wight. Dignitaries present included the local Aldershot Member of Parliament, Leo Docherty, together with the Mayor of Rushmoor, Sophia Choudhary, as well as Cllr Ken Muschamp, Cllr Charles Choudhary and Diane Bedford.
Representatives of the charities and other agencies gave interesting and inspirational talks about their own work and how donations are put to good use.
Amongst the 31 charities which received donations, were Phyllis Tuckwell, Lifelites, Guide Dogs for the Blind, Hampshire Air Ambulance, Stepping Stones, Limbcare, Henry Tyndale Community Special School and Veterans in Action.
William Withers said. 'This was a memorable and rewarding experience, with local and national charities coming together displaying such enthusiasm and in the process, making new friends. As Freemasons we believe in supporting our local communities in their functional activities and this event provided even more motivation for us to keep raising funds for such worthy causes.'
After the formal presentations had concluded, the attendees were invited to a buffet reception in the centre’s dining hall, where everyone had the opportunity to socialise and discuss many of the evening’s topics and recipients of the donations.
|Lodge No||Lodge Name||Charity|
|515||Zetland||Farnham Assist, Stepping Stones|
|723||Panmure||Phyllis Tuckwell, Limb Care, Step by Step|
|1331||Aldershot Camp||The Salvation Army, Hampshire Air Ambulance, Fleet Army Cadet Force|
|2475||Border||Stepping Stones, Messy Arts|
|2755||Waller Rodwell Wright||Asthma UK|
|4187||Palma Virtuti||Veterans Charity, Hampshire Air Ambulance|
|4919||Earl of Malmesbury||Stepping Stones|
|8385||Anniversary||Beavers Church Crookham|
|1971||Aldershot Army & Navy||SAAFA, Parity|
|2203||Farnborough North camp||Alzheimer's Café|
|4178||Aldershot Royal Engineers||Veterans in Action|
|4581||Mercury||Phyllis Tuckwell, Lifelites, Dogs for Good|
|5073||Fugelmere||Cancer Relief UK, Diabetes UK|
|6314||Ferneberga||Boots on the Ground, Alzheimer's Café|
|6664||Semper Fidelis||Phyllis Tuckwell|
|7154||Loyalty||Step by Step|
|7786||More Majorum||Ehlers-Danlos Support UK|
|7927||Lodge of Hospitality||Phyllis Tuckwell|
|8463||Rose of Hampshire||Prostate Cancer|
|8859||Mid Wessex Installed Masters||TBC|
|9107||Yateley Lodge||Tommy's Charity|
|9289||Alder Tree||Brain Tumour Charity|
|9336||United Progress||Henry Tyndale School|
|9393||Pegasus||Airborne Security Forces|
|9395||Ashburn St John||Wessex Cancer Trust|
|9732||Chevalier de Fer||TBC|
A Freemasons-funded project at a children’s hospice in Hampshire has been featured as part of a BBC show about disability and video games
Over the past year, the Province of Hampshire & Isle of Wight has provided significant funding to the charity Lifelites so it can provide life-changing assistive technology to children at a local hospice.
The ability to play video games can be beneficial for young people with disabilities. As many have very limited movement and are often unable to control anything for themselves, the technology Lifelites donates can help them to regain this ability. It can also help them to communicate with friends, encouraging social development and relieving isolation, as well as create the opportunity to play and have fun.
Lifelites Chief Executive Simone Enefer-Doy has left Freemasons' Hall to kick-start her 2,500 mile journey to 47 famous landmarks to raise awareness of Lifelites and £50,000 for the charity
Dubbed 'A Lift for Lifelites', Simone will see Freemasons in nearly every Province in England and Wales and will be stopping at landmarks such as Hadrian’s Wall, Angel of the North and Bletchley Park in vehicles including a classic Rolls Royce, a camper van, a four seater plane, an E Type Jaguar and even a zip wire.
Simone said: 'With the help of Freemasons and their vehicles around the country, I’m on a mission to raise the profile of our work and raise more funds to reach more children whose lives could be transformed by the technology we can provide.'
We'll be updating this page regularly, including images, as Simone continues on her epic quest.
Day 14 – Thursday 7 June
That's a wrap! Simone completed her 14 day challenge and finished in style on ThamesJet speedboat with guests including United Grand Lodge of England Chief Executive Dr David Staples. Her fundraising currently stands at over £103,000.
Day 13 – Wednesday 6 June
It's the penultimate day, starting with a trip to Bedfordshire at the Shuttleworth Collection. The next stop was Silverstone racetrack in Northamptonshire, which included completing a lap in a Jaguar, before driving this to Bletchley Park in Buckinghamshire. The last trip was to the home, studios and gardens of former artist Henry Moore in Hertfordshire.
Day 12 – Tuesday 5 June
Day 12 took in journeys across Lincolnshire, Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. The first stop was Gordon Boswell Romany Museum in Lincolnshire before using two vehicles, a Hudson Straight Six Touring Sedan and a Range Rover, to Bressington Steam and Gardens in Norfolk. There was still time to grab lunch at Bury St Edmunds Abbey in Suffolk before a BMW took Simone to her final stop in Cambridgeshire, which included a punt on the River Cam.
Day 11 – Monday 4 June
Simone crammed in four locations to start the week, with a wide variety of vehicles used. The day started in Yorkshire Sculpture Park before driving a 1977 Bentley to the National Tramway Museum in Derbyshire. It was from here that Simone then picked up a DeLorean to take her to Newstead Abbey in Nottinghamshire before completing the day by driving a gold Rolls-Royce to Victoria Park in Leicestershire.
Day 10 – Sunday 3 June
The week concludes with trips to Northumberland, Durham and Yorkshire and East Riding, as well as the news that Simone had already hit her £50,000 target. Trips included the Millennium Bridge in Northumberland, the Angel of the North and a scenic drive across the Yorkshire Moors to Bolton Castle.
Day 9 – Saturday 2 June
Day nine saw visits to the Provinces of West Lancashire and Cumberland and Westmorland, with landmarks including Hadrian’s Wall in Cumbria and transport provided by a horse and cart.
Day 8 – Friday 1 June
Two Rolls-Royces helped provide the transport on day nine, with Simone starting at the Avoncroft Museum in Worcestershire, driving down to New Place in Warwickshire and then to the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire. There was still time to conclude the day by visiting Manchester Cathedral in East Lancashire.
Day 7 – Thursday 31 May
At the halfway point, Simone made trips to Cheshire, Shropshire and Herefordshire – starting out at the Georgian Hall Dunham Massey, then heading to the RAF Museum Cosford in a custom built Rewaco Bike and finally, to Arthur’s Stone.
Day 6 – Wednesday 30 May
Day six was solely focused in North Wales where Simone took on the challenge of the fastest zip wire in the world. This was then followed by making the journey to Chester in a six month old blue McLaren Spider and flanked by the Widows’ Sons motorcyclists and Blood Bike volunteers.
Day 5 – Tuesday 29 May
Day five was a journey across the borders for Simone as she ventured to Oxfordshire before heading west to Monmouthshire and continued to South Wales and West Wales. Landmarks included Radcliffe Camera in Oxford, Caerleon Amphitheatre in Newport, the Donald Gordon theatre in Cardiff and ending the day in the county town of Carmarthen to meet the Provincial Grand Lodge of West Wales.
Day 4 – Monday 28 May
Simone began day four by driving an Aston Martin DB9 to the Grand Pier in Weston-super-Mare with help from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Somerset. A 1928 MG Riley saloon then took Simone to her next port of call, Clifton Suspension Bridge where the Provincial Grand Lodge of Bristol had a 1966 Austin Mini Cooper waiting to take her to Caen Hill Locks. It was here that Simone met representatives from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Wiltshire, before the final stop of the day saw her clock up the miles to Shaw House in Berkshire to be greeted by members of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Berkshire.
Day 3 – Sunday 27 May
Day three involved journeys to Dorset, Devon and Cornwall. It started with a visit to Lulworth Cove in Dorset to be met by members from the Provincial Grand Lodge in a yellow camper van and to receive a donation of £2,000. Simone then ventured to Buckfast Abbey to receive a donation of £5,000 from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Devonshire before departing in a classic Rover to head to Lanhydrock House and Garden in Cornwall, where she received another donation of £1,750.
Day 2 – Saturday 26 May
Simone took to the sky for day two, meeting a representative from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Hampshire and Isle of Wight who drove her to Southampton to board a flight to Jersey, to meet members of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Guernsey and Alderney.
Day 1 – Friday 25 May
Simone has begun her challenge, leaving in a taxi escorted by a fleet of Widows Sons motorcyclists. This is the start of her 14 day road trip with a difference, using a variety of unusual and extraordinary forms of transport.
The next destination for Friday was Richmond Park where Simone was met by representatives from the Provincial Grand Lodge of Middlesex after arriving in a Porsche 550 Spyder. Further destinations included Guildford Cathedral, where Simone was met by a Noddy car, and Brighton Royal Pavilion, where the Provincial Grand Lodge of Sussex made a donation of £5,000.
Lifelites has a package of their magical technology at every children’s hospice across the British Isles and their work is entirely funded by donations. Through the journey they are seeking to raise £50,000 – that’s the cost of one of their projects for four years.
You can sponsor Simone by clicking here
The Province has pledged to cover the entire cost of the package, which includes accessible, cutting-edge technology, as well as training and technical support services.
The technology will transform the time children spend at the hospice, enabling them to play games, be creative with art and music, control something and communicate with others.
With the funding covering the next four years, this is the first time that children at the Isle of Man hospice have been able to use this type of technology.