The origins of the Royal Masonic Trust for Girls and Boys (the Trust) go back as far as 1788 when Chevalier Ruspini established a school for the daughters of deceased and distressed Freemasons. A scheme for clothing and educating the sons of indigent Freemasons was introduced 10 years later in 1798. In 1982 the separate Girls and Boys charities were merged into the Trust to create a single entity.
Today our mission statement is:
To relieve poverty and advance the education of children of a Masonic family and, when funds permit, support other children in need.
the Main Work of the Trust
We help children and young people of all ages to overcome the barriers of poverty and to complete their education. To qualify for support from the main funds a family must have suffered distress (for example from the death, disability or desertion of a parent) that has resulted in financial hardship. There must always be a Masonic connection; usually the qualifying Freemason is the father or grandfather, but in some cases it could be someone else who is a Freemason who can demonstrate that they are bringing up the child or children as their own.
We aim to help beneficiaries to receive the education and training they need to achieve their potential and so succeed in life. Examples include providing assistance with the cost of academic study or with pursuing apprenticeships for practical trades. Children and young people are supported in a wide range of educational environments, including state and private schools, colleges and universities.
Financial support can be given in the form of maintenance allowances, school or course fees, computer equipment, music and sports lessons, or grants for educational travel, equipment and materials, and to meet many other educational needs. Support can also be given to top up training wages when these are inadequate, and there is a limited amount of accommodation available for those studying or training for employment in London.
Help with school fees may be available, but this is only likely to happen in cases where a child is already at a fee-paying school when the family distress occurs. Fees are not considered if parents have sent their child to a fee-paying school without the financial means to support them. We cannot consider fees for a child to attend a fee-paying school on the basis of academic ability or when the parents are dissatisfied with the state school their child is to attend.
For beneficiaries with special educational or physical needs, grants can be given to assist with specialist tuition and equipment. This could be, for example, the purchase of a wheelchair or certain modifications to the family home to improve quality of life.
Families with particularly low incomes may also receive Christmas and summer holiday grants to help make the holidays a happy and fulfilling time for all the family.
Copyright 2011: The Provincial Grand Lodge of North Wales
Created and maintained by: W.Bro. David Anthony Fink