With the assistance of the Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF), the Freemasons' Charity, Berkshire Freemasons donated over £9,000 to four charities in Berkshire to help them support local communities
During June 2020, grants were given to:
Berkshire West Carers Hub
A grant of £2,000 will help the Berkshire West Carers Hub, which is based in Wokingham, purchase tablets to help relieve isolation. The tablets are going to carers and helpers to help them provide support to families and individuals who cannot get out. Due to current restrictions, the support groups and drop in sessions are stopped and these tablets will be invaluable in keeping in touch and keeping abreast of the advice in these challenging times
Berkshire Women’s Aid
A grant of £5,000 was given to the Berkshire Women’s Aid (BWA). BWA support victims, women, children and families who are or have experienced domestic abuse. The charity works in the local community: Reading, Bracknell and Wokingham. This grant is helping them purchase furniture for some of the six additional homes they opened during this pandemic period. These homes offer a safe and secure setting for the victims of domestic violence
The Link Visiting Scheme
The charity normally runs a number of activities and social events to support elderly people, as well as running a befriending service to help relieve loneliness. These activities are suspended due to the Covid-19 situation so new ways of helping their members were required. A grant of £1,000 via the MCF will help in making up goody bags for lonely and vulnerable elder person. The packs have such things as puzzles, treats, games and books so helping provide amusement and fun as a slight compensation for the lack of face to face visits.
Reading Mencap provide services throughout Berkshire to children and adults with learning difficulties. The current health crisis has, however, severely restricted what they can do. It has not stopped the need for their services, but they need to be delivered in new ways. Specialised activity packs, tailored to individual needs, have been created but support is required to get them to the individual. The number of people requesting the packs has jumped from 45 to 80 in the last few weeks. A grant of £1,200, through the Berkshire Covid-19 Fund, will help to cover the cost of delivering activity packs.