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Dorset Freemasons Supporting Ukraine

Thursday, 10 March 2022

Provincial Grand Master for Dorset Graham Glazier asked for assistance to help Kevin Martin of Purbeck Lodge 4355 support refugees in #Ukraine. A friend of Kevin's is Ukrainian, although she has lived locally for many years, she has returned to the Ukraine to assist with the refugees

She  urgently requested the following items:

Blankets, warm clothing, children's clothing, children's toys, nappies, baby food, tinned food, sleeping bags, toiletries.

Kevin used his premises at West Parley as a storage hub facility and organised the drop offs from Dorset Lodges. Kevin said, 'We’ve had the most unbelievable 48 hours. We received over 200 car loads of the very finest quality clothes, blankets, sleeping bags.  This is an enormous amount of items that Dorset Freemasons and their wives have gone out and purchased. Literally thousands upon thousands of nappies, toiletries, food and drink. One Dorset Freemason spent £2,500.00 on tinned food.'

Kevin was informed by his contact in the Ukraine that all items needed to be boxed and labelled.  As a consequence a local firm offered 1,500 of their best quality boxes free of charge, which they not only delivered but supplied two members of staff to assist us in putting all the boxes together. Somewhere in the region of forty Dorset Freemasons, their wives, and our friends, neighbours and family, helped sort, pack and label all the items. One lorry containing 7,500 bags of rice and another full of the items requested has since arrived in Poland for onward transportation to Ukraine.

Dorset Freemason David Vaughan said: 'I was one of the many responders to the Dorset Freemasonry appeal for Ukraine donations. I collected a car load of every kind of requirement and delivered it to Parley. However, after meeting Kevin and seeing the phenomenal amount of contributions I offered to help deliver the donations to Maidstone for onward shipment to Ukraine and Poland. Three vans were filled to the roof when we left Parley at 05:00 hrs on Saturday morning. We arrived at our destination just after 07:00. We set to and unloaded the vans onto pallets, ready to be loaded onto the articulated trucks. We then returned home, tired, but happy to have had the privilege of being involved in such a humanitarian requirement'.