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Following the recent announcement from the Mark Benevolent Fund of a £35,000 grant to the Shelterbox charity, many Provinces also wanted to help in the relief efforts. The overwhelming support of 18 Provinces added another £32,850 giving us a staggering figure of £67,850.

Your generosity has now funded 1,938 ShelterKits. They are currently being distributed to those affected by the devastating storms and hurricanes in the Caribbean and surrounding areas.  You can be safe in the knowledge that funds will reach their intended destination.

Mark well Brethren and keep up the magnificent work.

About the Mark Benevolent Fund

The Mark Benevolent Fund (M.B.F.) was founded in 1868 by Canon George Raymond Portal. The aim of the charity is to help poor and distressed Mark Master Masons and their immediate family. To date over £7 million has been disbursed in grants to individual petitioners.  The M.B.F. also makes donations to many other charities and worthy causes. These grants have totalled over £20million since 1868. Examples of grants over recent years are £2.6 million to the Hope for tomorrow Cancer Charity; £12,937 to the Dogs for Good charity for the training and development of a support dog; £1.4 million to St Bartholomew’s Hospital for Cancer Care; £13,150 to the Baldwin Trust for the refurbishment of canal boats specially modified for disabled visitors; £107,628 for St Oswald’s Hospice in Northumberland to replace and upgrade their kitchen facilities and a renewed partnership with St John Ambulance pledging over £3 million to help replace their fleet of ambulances, mobile treatment centres and support vehicles.

As the 150th Anniversary of the M.B.F. approaches, it is important to reflect on Canon Portal’s drive, enthusiasm and dedication, remembering that to him it was wrong for there to be any delay in providing assistance to those in need. Canon Portal’s own Latin tag “Bis dat qui cito dat” – ‘He gives twice who gives promptly’ or ‘A gift given without hesitation is as good as two gifts’, became the guiding principle of the M.B.F. We still live by that adage, which is as relevant today as it was when he founded the Fund in 1868.