The District Grand Lodge of Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean (DGLBEC) has made an initial donation of US $5,000.00 towards the volcano relief efforts in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG).
Donations of foodstuff, water, clothing and supplies were also made by individual Lodges and Districts to the ongoing disaster relief efforts. They have also offered to support the rebuilding efforts expected in due course, a release states.
Following the eruption of the Soufriere Volcano in April the Freemasons Lodges regionally and internationally, expressed their solidarity with the government and people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, in its commitment to provide relief to displaced persons, and have pledged their wholehearted support to the relief effort.
Trevor Thompson, a member of the fraternity explained that the Freemasons have conducted their own research and decided to offer relief in three phases.
“The first phase being the assistance given to the displaced persons while they were in the shelters. The donations which were distributed to persons in the orange and red zones to assist with the cleaning and clearing phase – we consider to be the second phase.
The third phase would be assistance to the restoration and reconstruction of homes damaged during the volcanic eruptions,” Thompson said
He disclosed that sister lodges internationally and regionally are already making contributions to assist the National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) and the government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines with reconstruction projects.
The cheque of US $5,000.00 was presented to immediate past President of the Rotary Club of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Annette Mark.
With the blessings and approval of NEMO, St. George Lodge 2616, acting on behalf of the DGLBEC, has partnered with the Rotary Clubs in St. Vincent in the distribution of the food stuff and goods to the shelters and other displaced persons from the orange and red zones. Lodge members also have joined members of the Rotary Club in the distribution of goods to persons who have returned to their homes in the red and orange zones.
St. Vincent and the Grenadines is home to St. George Lodge 2616 EC and St George Royal Arch Chapter 744 SC. St. George 2616 is a member of the regional body. The DGLBEC, in turn, falls under the umbrella of the internationally renowned United Grand Lodge of England.
Freemasons throughout the world make substantial contributions to charitable causes, as charity is one of the doctrines of the Order.