One of the first major grants awarded since the establishment of the Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF), has been received by a charity with a base in the Province of Warwickshire. FareShare West Midlands has received a major grant from the MCF, and on their behalf, John Hayward, Provincial Charity Steward visited FareShare West Midlands, to meet the staff, learn about the organisation, and present a Grant Certificate. The Grant is for £60,000 over three years, and is partly a contribution to the salary cost of FareShare’s West Midlands’ Warehouse Manager, together with assistance towards the transportation and delivery of food.
FareShare is a national operation with over twenty centres. It is estimated that there are over 3.4 million tonnes of food wasted every year by the UK food industry. Good food becomes surplus for a number of reasons such as over production or a short shelf life.
FareShare works with retailers and suppliers to access their surplus food including fresh fruit and vegetables, meats, breakfast cereals and dairy products and redistributes it to vulnerable people in society through charities such as day centres for older people, church centres and hostels for the homeless. The Charity tackles areas which are considered to be the most deprived in the UK. These are generally concentrated in a ring around city centres – in Birmingham this includes areas such as Aston, Soho, Sparkbrook and Bordesley Green.
FareShare has been in operation for twenty years, and estimates that 18.3 million meals were provided last year to vulnerable people. Many of the staff are volunteers who are very happy to give up many hours of their time to help the most vulnerable in society.
This is one of the first Community Support and Research grants to be awarded by the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is one of the largest grant-making charities in the country and is funded entirely by the donations of Freemasons and their families. David Innes, Chief Executive at the Masonic Charitable Foundation, said: “The Masonic Charitable Foundation is incredibly proud to support FareShare. We award grants totalling millions of pounds to national and local charities that help people affected by hardship, disability, exclusion or disadvantage. We hope that this grant, which was funded by donations from across the Masonic community, will enable FareShare to continue to make a difference to people in need.”
The Warwickshire Masonic Charitable Association has been pleased to support FareShare in the recent years, and will continue to do so. The visit to the depot of behalf of the MCF was highly educational, and was obviously appreciated by the staff and volunteers. For further information on the charity’s operation visit www.fareshare.org.uk The FareShare Annual report is available here. The FareShare organisation is always looking for volunteers for driving, loading and warehousing requirements, and anyone interested in supporting the charity is urged to contact them, or our own Charity Office for further information.
Provincial Charity Steward