Companions, as you will all know, we are shortly to recommence our Chapter meetings, and I feel this is an ideal time to remind you of the Warwickshire Royal Arch Benevolent Fund, what it does and how Chapters and Companions can contribute.
Over the last few months, a number of donations from the fund have been made to local charities which have all been publicised by our Provincial Grand Almoner, E Comp Rod Hinton. These include:
Free@Last Myton Hospice Buddy Bags Foundation
St Giles Hospice Birmingham Children’s Hospital South Warwickshire NHS Trust
And several others via the Chapter Charity Support Scheme
We are very grateful to the Chapters who have made donations to the Benevolent Fund since we emerged from the pandemic towards the end of 2021. Whilst the Fund continued to make donations during 2020/2021, the funds available to the Royal Arch to make donations to our local charities are still lower than we would wish. Any Chapters that can support the Fund in the months ahead will enable the Fund to meet the aims and objectives set out on the Royal Arch website.
The charity pages on the Royal Arch website have undergone considerable redesign and will continue to be updated to reflect our activities and include the alternative ways of making donations. These include Gift Aid envelopes using the RABF Relief Chest, including use of the Chapter Charity Support Scheme, together with use of the JustGiving facility and the use of the QR code to donate. This means that if a Companion wishes to make a donation in lieu of a missed meeting, or simply in addition to a collection, it can be made remotely, using the internet or from a mobile phone. Several Chapters have included the QR code on their summons.
Our Most Excellent Grand Superintendent, is keen to support our local charities, both by major donations as is the original aim of the charity, or by smaller donations as added to the Fund’s aims a few years ago.
To enable the fund to make donations and grants as outlined above, it is necessary for the fund to have an income, which is fortunately forthcoming via many Chapters in the Province. We are most grateful to the Chapters who regularly make donations directly to the fund. This income is the only means open to the Benevolent Fund to continue to make grants to charities, and at least one collection per year from every Chapter will go a long way towards enabling the Fund to fulfil its aims.
John Hayward Vice Chairman, Royal Arch Benevolent Fund
Rod Hinton Provincial Grand Almoner
Steve Price Provincial Grand Charity Steward