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Gift from Lincolnshire's Freemasons helps support victims of India cyclone




Freemasons from South Holland have contributed to financial support given to victims of Cyclone Fani which has ravaged the Indian state of Odisha, writes Ben Smith.

The aid was given by 21 Freemasons in Lincolnshire, specifically the Freemasons’ charity, the Masonic Charitable Foundation, and will help to provide dry ration kits of basic food to 5,000 families, along with household essentials.

DONORS: Some of the Freemasons, all of whom have contributed to disaster relief efforts in India through the Masonic Charitable Foundation. Pictured are, from left, John Cooper, Richard Skells, Kevin Savage, Sean Devlin, and Jeremy Hills. Picture: Jon Hollis. (12165260)
DONORS: Some of the Freemasons, all of whom have contributed to disaster relief efforts in India through the Masonic Charitable Foundation. Pictured are, from left, John Cooper, Richard Skells, Kevin Savage, Sean Devlin, and Jeremy Hills. Picture: Jon Hollis. (12165260)

A further 2,000 households will receive shelter materials so they can begin to repair their homes, while 2,000 children will be provided with educational materials so they can get back to school as soon as possible.

The grant of £15,000 is being donated to Plan International UK, which is working to help the most vulnerable survivors in 70 communities in the worst hit areas of Odisha’s Puri district. A further £1,250 is being sent to Freemasons in Bengal, at their request, to support relief efforts on the ground.

Over 10 million people have been affected across 11 districts of Odisha by Cyclone Fani. It was the strongest cyclone to strike India in 20 years.

Cyclone Fani hit the north-eastern Indian state of Odisha on Friday, May 3, causing storm surges and powerful winds which destroyed 2,000 homes. (11728331)
Cyclone Fani hit the north-eastern Indian state of Odisha on Friday, May 3, causing storm surges and powerful winds which destroyed 2,000 homes. (11728331)

Tanya Barron, chief executive of Plan International UK, said: “We’re hugely grateful to the Masonic Charitable Foundation for supporting our disaster response in India. This generous grant will make a big difference to many thousands of people affected by this devastating cyclone and help them get back on their feet.”

Dave Wheeler, the Freemasons’ provincial grand master in Lincolnshire, said: “The lives of many thousands of people across a huge area of Odisha have been damaged by this disaster. I’m very pleased that the Masonic Charitable Foundation was able to move so quickly and provide funds for Plan International UK’s vital work at the heart of the disaster zone.”

The Masonic Charitable Foundation is funded by Freemasons and their families and friends, from across England and Wales. It is one of the largest grant-making charities in the country, and is funded entirely through the generosity of Freemasons, their families and friends. It awards millions of pounds each year to local and national charities that help vulnerable people, advance medical research and provide opportunities for young people.

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