Wednseday 24th May in the safe hands of Bob Hannant from Hermes Lodge a very privilaged opportunity arose to be seated at Fareham Masonic Centre to witness representatives from various charities receive monies raised by brethren from all lodges across the Solent Area (Fareham, Gosport, Isle of Wight) of our province.
The charities which benifited were:
Chernoble Children, Compassionate Friends, Fare & Dist Parkinsons Association, Fareham & District Support Association for Disabled, Fareham's Mayors Charity, Childrens Liver Disease Foundation, MacMillan Support Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portchester CC, Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance, Foot Print, Canine Partners, Swan, Titchfield Haven Breast Cancer, QA Hospital Rocky Appeal, QA Hospital Rocky Scanner Appeal, Cancer Support, Rising Stars, Portsmouth Hospitals Charity, Planets, St.Johns School Project, Leesland School, Gosport & Lee-on-Solent First Responders, Footsteps for Oliver, Gosport Food Bank, Gafirs, Gosport Mayor's Charity, Love for Life, Hannah's Homes, Earl Mountbatten Hospice, Gosport Opportunity Group, Shore Leave Haslar, Tea, Talk & Tonk, Farehams Mens Shed, Southern Domestic Abuse Services, Coast Watch, Peel Common Infant Schoool, Falklands Veterans Foundation, Y Services, Rainbow Centre, RNBT, Rowans Hospice, Meniaise, Frankie's Heros, Fredrick Wallace Memorial Fund, MIND, Downs Syndrome, Naomi House/Life Lights.
Many brethren and charity friends were present. The Provincial Grand Master Michael Wilks addressed all those gathered, many kind words spoken. The Assistant Provincial Grand Master for the Solent Area Dave Perkis also attended, this being one of his last duties in office before handing over the reigns to David Foot at the AGM in July.
As for many lodges the masonic year draws to a close this was a very fitting occasion for brethren to reflect on the tremendous work undertaken by those charities who received donations. Over £34.000 has been raised by Solent Area lodges and was distributed at this excellent event. Most humbling, Freemasonry at its best. Well done to everyone...thank you Bob Hannant.