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Vital research at the Gallipoli Medical Research Foundation could potentially be fast-tracked after a new piece of lab equipment was donated by the local Freemasons.

City of Brisbane Consistory, with the support of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland, recently donated a new Epithelial Voltohmmeter which will be used by researchers in the Liver Cancer and Ophthalmology Research Units to measure membrane potential and resistance of epithelial cells in culture.  Up until now, researchers have had to travel from Greenslopes to QIMR Berghofer in Herston to measure their cultures, for a procedure that takes no more than 10 minutes.

City of Brisbane Consistory Grand Secretary, Rod Powell said that having this resource on site would save valuable time and money – potentially leading to improving patient outcomes sooner.

“In the past eight years the Consistory has donated over $18,000 to the Gallipoli Medical Research Foundation. We hope our latest donation supports scientists in their quest for answers,” Rod said.

Currently Liver cancer is the fastest growing cancer in Australia. Head of the Liver Cancer Research Program at the Gallipoli Medical Research Institute, Dr Jason Steel, welcomed the donation.

“This piece of equipment is vital for our research where we are attempting to model the epithelial barriers found in the Gastrointestinal tract in cell culture and find viruses that are able to move through this layer and shuttle to the liver. The ultimate goal of this work is to help us target the liver with an oral treatment,” Dr Steel said.

“Similarly, the new equipment will support the Ophthalmology unit to model the epithelial barriers found in the eye, as they attempt to develop treatments that can move through the eye and into diseases such as Uveal melanoma found behind the eye,” he said.

In addition, the Consistory donated computers and software to the Foundation’s Veteran’s Mental Health Initiative, enabling researchers to carry out comprehensive imaging and analysis of their lab findings, looking at ways to support the next generation of Veterans transitioning back to civilian life.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer Gary Mark, spoke highly of City of Brisbane Consistory acknowledging their charitable efforts.

“Empowering researchers to understand and find solutions for some of the most complex health issues aligns with our philanthropic goals, which in part is to equip people to lead better lives,” Gary said.

“For that reason Hand Heart Pocket was happy to match the charitable efforts of City of Brisbane Consistory, maximising the impact of their donation,” he said.

Photo: PhD student Bijay Dhungel uses the new Epithelial Voltohmmeter as part of his Liver cancer research at the Gallipoli Medical Research Institute. 

Find out who Hand Heart Pocket helps 

The District Grand Master of North Queensland and his deputy are leading the chorus of support for Hand Heart Pocket’s donation of $290k to fund Camp Quality’s Family Camps in Queensland for the next 12 months.

The pair was invited to stop by a camp put on by the children’s charity on Magnetic Island this past weekend, where 43 children impacted by cancer from North Queensland were able to create memories outside of hospital.

District Grand Master of North Queensland, Les Keane said the visit, although brief, reinforced how important it is for these children to be given the opportunity to thrive, in a fun and relaxed environment.

“To see the smiles on these children’s faces was really special, especially when you know what they’re going through. For many, this was the first time they had been able to leave their hospital bed to enjoy themselves and mix with other children going through a similar situation,” Les said.

“There was a huge team of volunteers too, with some said to have volunteered with Camp Quality for over 20 years. That kind of commitment is hard to come by these days.”

“We are delighted that Hand Heart Pocket has donated $290k on behalf of Freemasons of Queensland, to help ensure state-wide support is available to children impacted by cancer and their families,” he said.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark said Saturday’s announcement which took place in Brisbane, had been a resounding success and that it was something which all Freemasons of Queensland should be proud of, particularly because of the state-wide reach of this donation.

“It was important for us to make sure our donation made a difference in the lives of as many Queensland families, whether they were from regional and rural Queensland or in the metropolitan cities, because our membership like Camp Quality is spread throughout the state,” Gary said.

Find out why you should support Hand Heart Pocket 

Photo: Camp Quality Recreation Program Coordinator Emma Wilkes, Melissa Parsons from Leadlease, North Queensland District Grand Master Les Keane, North Queensland Deputy Grand Master Beresford Whyte and Camp Leader Jeff Brooks. 

Watch Lodge representatives talk about making a difference with Hand Heart Pocket's support 

Outdoor living is a huge part of people’s lives here in Queensland and it will be no different for the eight young people with high care needs living at Youngcare’s Livewell Apartments in Albany Creek, which were officially opened last month.

Members of the local Ionic Prudence Masonic Lodge have donated funds for a new outdoor setting, enabling residents to sit outside and catch up with family and friends or simply soak up the winter sun.

Lodge Master, Michael Churchward said the Lodge was able to donate the outdoor setting with the help of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland.

“This is our way of saying welcome to the neighbourhood. It’s a housewarming present if you like, but in all seriousness we are continually amazed by the work of Youngcare and all that they do to ensure young people with high care needs can lead young lives,” Michael said.

“They’ve done a marvellous job of making the apartments a warm and welcoming place, with all the mod-cons and technology, where the residents can really make it their own and be part of the community, which we think makes all the difference,” he said.

Interestingly, young people seem to have been the focus of the Lodges’ fundraising efforts this year, with the Lodge also having donated $1500 worth of equipment for Mitchelton Special School’s sensory unit for students with autism and over $400 for Queensland’s only children’s hospice, Hummingbird House for the purchase of a glider and ottoman set – all made possible with the support of Hand Heart Pocket.

Chief Executive Officer Gary Mark, commended Ionic Prudence Lodge for being attentive to the needs of their community.

“Like Hand Heart Pocket, the organisations that Ionic Prudence Lodge has chosen to support believe in improving people’s quality of life through innovative support, giving us every reason to match the fundraising efforts of the Lodge,” Gary said.

Photo: Ionic Prudence Lodge representatives John Sheraton and Michael Churchward present a cheque for $800 to Youngcare Chief Executive Officer, Anthony Ryan. 

Watch footage of the official cheque handover

On Saturday 8th July, 150 kids growing up with cancer enjoyed a rare opportunity to play in the snow in sunny Queensland at Camp Quality’s Hand Heart Pocket Family Fun Day at Snow4Kids park, where a new partnership was announced.

The Snow4Kids experience is one of Camp Quality’s Family Fun Days, which offer the chance for families impacted by cancer to reconnect and create memories outside of hospital. It was the first time many kids had seen snow since diagnosis and for some, the first time ever.

The day was made possible by Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland who also announced a donation of $290,000 to fund Camp Quality’s Family Camps in the Queensland community for the next 12 months.

Kylea Tink, Camp Quality CEO says the partnership with Hand Heart Pocket will help Camp Quality support a great number of Queensland families.

“Camp Quality aims to support every Australian child impacted by cancer – be that their own diagnosis or the diagnosis of someone they love. Thanks to Hand Heart Pocket we will be able to focus on ensuring our programs reach all families who need them within the Queensland community,” Kylea said.

At present, Camp Quality provides innovative programs and services to 725 Queensland families impacted by cancer. Camps provide kids with a vital break to strengthen their wellbeing and boost their support networks in an environment filled with fun and optimism.

Camp Quality mum, Elmarie Oberholzer knows firsthand how hard it can be to watch your own kids miss out on the fun. Within five months of moving from New Zealand to Brisbane, her one year- old son, Louis was diagnosed with Leukaemia.

“We had barely found a place to live when Louis got sick. Everything just happened at once, and we just had to start treading water to stay afloat,” Elmarie says. “I first met Camp Quality in the hospital and attended many Camp Quality programs including Family Camp. At Family Camp, you can connect with families in the same situation as you, which is exactly what you need to remember that you aren’t alone.”

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark said it was proud to cover the costs of the camps because it meant Camp Quality could do more for Queensland families impacted by
cancer.

“Camp Quality’s purpose is to give every Australian child impacted by cancer every opportunity to thrive. This resonates with Hand Heart Pocket in that, we are very much for supporting programs that empower people to lead better lives,” Gary said.

This is one of several significant donations that Hand Heart Pocket has announced in a matter of weeks, indicating the increasing focus that Freemasons in Queensland are placing on their charity work.

“We’re all about providing sustainable support that delivers positive outcomes by giving a hand up - not a handout - to communities, to other charities and to individuals,” said Gary.

Photo: Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark hands over a cheque for $290k to Camp Quality Chief Executive Officer, Kylea Tink with Hand Heart Pocket Champion, Jason Brummell standing alongside. 

A donation of almost $12,000 has been handed over to Carinya Home for the Aged in Atherton enabling the purchase of a range of specialised equipment to ensure the safe and dignified care of residents.

Four electric beds, two bariatric wheelchairs and a bariatric shower/commode chair will be purchased with the funds donated by Atherton Duke of Connaught and Fraser Masonic Lodges in conjunction with Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland.

Atherton Duke of Connaught representative Les Simpson and his wife Barbara said that they wanted to thank locals for getting behind the Lodges’ fundraising efforts.

“On behalf of the Masonic Fraternity, we would like to thank the community for their support, we couldn’t have done it without them,” Les said.

“Enhancing residents’ wellbeing and empowering staff to care for residents in the most effective manner was the intention behind our donation,” Les said. 

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark endorsed the efforts of the masons in the Tablelands.

“I congratulate both Atherton Duke of Connaught and Fraser Masonic Lodges for taking the lead to raise funds for this vital equipment,” Gary said.

“For many years the Lodges have worked to give a hand up to those in need, enabling people to lead better lives which Hand Heart Pocket fully supports. That’s why we were ready to match their latest fundraising efforts and effectively double the impact of their donation,” Gary said. 

Photo: Atherton Duke of Connaught and Fraser Masonic Lodges joined forces to raise funds for the local Aged Care facility. Photo courtesy The Tablelander.  

Find out who Hand Heart Pocket helps 

Watch footage of the official cheque handover

More young Queenslanders with high care needs are set to get the support they need, to stay at home and out of inappropriate housing after Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland today announced its renewed support to the tune of $150,000 for the 2017 round of Youngcare’s At Home Care Grants (AHCG) program.   

The grants provide one-off funding between $2,000 and $10,000 for equipment, home modifications and emergency respite for young people aged 18-65, who are at risk of entering inappropriate housing such as aged care, allowing them to remain at home with their families, for as long as possible.

Youngcare Chief Executive Officer, Anthony Ryan, said that the additional funding would assist Youngcare to deliver on its mission to ensure young people regardless of their care needs lead young lives with greater choice, dignity and independence.

Too many young Australians with high care needs are being left behind. These young people deserve the freedom to choose how they live their lives— and it’s up to all of us to make sure that happens,” Anthony said.

 In 2016, $250,000 was awarded to 44 Queensland families, enabling them to keep their loved ones at home and Hand Heart Pocket’s donation of $150,000 directly benefited 30 of those families.  “Yet, the reality is that a total of 87 people applied for grants with a value of almost $640,000, meaning that 43 people missed out, simply due to a lack of funding” he said

“With the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) the disability sector is seeing positive change and Youngcare is excited by the opportunity to scale up the options available to young people.  While working with the NDIS we continue to deliver our grants which are so vital to ensure that families are getting the support they need.  The renewed partnership with Hand Heart Pocket will enable us to again help more young people with high care needs to live the young lives we all deserve.”

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark, said that upon hearing the plight of these families who were often physically, emotionally and financially drained, Hand Heart Pocket was compelled to do more.

“Last year following our initial donation of $150,000, Hand Heart Pocket had the privilege of sitting on the panel alongside other donors, disability academics, health professionals and Youngcare staff who shortlisted and awarded the AHCG Queensland round,” Gary said.

“We came away with a great sense of pride, because we could see the difference our support would make, yet the number of families missing out on grants left us wanting to do more. We are delighted that Youngcare has once again accepted our support this year. May our combined efforts make a significant difference for more young Queenslanders with high care needs,” he said. 

Photo: Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark (centre) hands over a cheque for $150K to Youngcare Chief Executive Officer, Anthony Ryan (centre right), with the Hand Heart Pocket Champions (far right) and members of Ionic Prudence Lodge standing alongside (far left). 

Watch footage of the official cheque handover

The state’s largest drop in and support centre for the homeless, 139 Club, is set to extend services from five to seven days a week, as part of a 12-month pilot program thanks to a $340,000 donation from Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland.

Announced this morning in Fortitude Valley at a morning tea with some of the centre’s clients, the donation will fund a pilot program that is expected to allow 139 Club to build on their efforts to provide better outcomes for the homeless.  

139 Club Chief Executive Officer, Sara Harrup, said that the donation will make all the difference to their clients and support a broader strategy to make a long term, visible impact on homelessness in the river city through the expansion of services and innovative support.   

“Homelessness is a daily struggle that doesn’t go away on the weekends. Being open seven days will enable us to provide more continuity of support and reach those we may not reach on other days – meaning those sleeping rough in Brisbane will no longer be left to get by on their own over the weekend,” Sarah said.

“139 Club has always been a home for the day for those without one and our ethos is to build resilience and promote dignity, increasing people’s capacity to sustain a better life in the long term, with support to find suitable accommodation,” she said.  

From October, 139 Club will be able to provide essential services such as meals, showers, laundry facilities, day beds, and medical attention on Saturdays and Sundays as well as a scaled back version of individual case support for emergency situations. An increased focus on social inclusion such as leisure activities will also be implemented on weekends.

“We’re very hopeful that this 12-month pilot program will provide us with the opportunity to secure longer-term funding to have a lasting impact on Brisbane’s homeless,” Sara said.

Those doing it tough agree. Angelo lives on the streets and is a frequent visitor at 139 Club.  “Opening on the weekends will be like gold.  It will help a lot of people - they are going hungry on the weekends. Now there will be a safe place to come, to get food, rest and friendship.”

Grace, another person doing it tough, agrees. “It’s a really great thing. It will help so much. I’ve just got out of a violent relationship and at 139 Club you feel safe - it’s somewhere to talk to other people and feel ok.”

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark, said that maximising the efforts of organisations that are at the coal face was central to the decision to provide funding to 139 Club.  

“Support of the homeless and marginalised members of our community aligns with Hand Heart Pocket’s values which are about alleviating suffering and misfortune to empower people to lead better lives,” he said.

“Hand Heart Pocket is proud to support 139 Club, an organisation that is on our doorstep here in Fortitude Valley. This initiative has the potential to make a tangible difference for those impacted by homelessness in Brisbane and beyond,” Gary said. 

Photo: Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark hands over a cheque for $340K to 139 Club Chief Executive Officer, Sara Harrup with Hand Heart Pocket Champions standing alongside.  

For over 20 years Cittamani Hospice Service on the Sunshine Coast has provided in-home palliative care support to over 3000 terminally ill patients and their families.

Today there is a growing need for their services in the region prompting the local Masonic Lodge to lend a hand.

Waverley-Palmwoods Lodge with the support of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland, recently handed over two alternating air-mattresses which will add to the catalogue of specialised and essential equipment that the organisation loans out to families, including hospital beds, wheelchairs, commodes and more.

Lodge Secretary, Bill Niven said that making a difference on a local level has always been important to the Lodge.

“To think, that, this will help Cittamani provide comfort to more terminally ill people is so worthwhile in our eyes,” Bill said.

“Last year, we donated three wheelchairs and were keen to offer more support, particularly seeing as Cittamani provides its services free of charge, right from palliative care nurses, social and pastoral care workers, volunteers, through to bereavement support,” he said.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark praised Waverley-Palmwoods Lodge for standing by the local initiative.

“Showing compassion to those who are terminally ill and their families is something that Hand Heart Pocket can identify with, giving us every reason to match Waverley-Palmwoods Lodge’s donation,” Gary said.

“Our purpose is to provide sustainable support that delivers positive outcomes through engagement with communities and this is a shining example of what can be achieved when we work together,” he said.

Photo: (from back) Waverley-Palmwoods Lodge representatives Graeme McIntyre, Brad Imberger and David Ledger with (from front) Cittamani’s Jo Newman, Sue Hart from Bunnings and Lodge Secretary Bill Niven.  

Find out why you should support Hand Heart Pocket

 

Toowoomba’s Sunrise Way Rehabilitation Centre which is home to those recovering from drug and alcohol addiction has been given a hand up from Darling Downs Masonic Lodge.

Lodge Secretary, Ken Stephen said the new laptop, which the Lodge donated, with the help of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland, would support residents in their rehabilitation, improving their quality of life.

“It’s been fantastic to be able to provide this on-going support to Sunrise Way,” Ken said.

“Earlier in the year the Lodge, through their own funds, donated a projector and projector screen, so all these additional resources will assist in making the rehabilitation program more engaging and effective. The new resources are currently being used during group psychosocial education and individual counselling,” he said.

“Similarly, late last year, the Lodge donated a commercial dishwasher with Hand Heart Pocket’s assistance, ensuring residents have the facilities to wash up after preparing and cooking their own meals.”

“Without the presence of Sunrise Way in our community many people would be worse off, so we’re very supportive of their work, “Ken said.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark, commended Darling Downs Lodge for getting behind a local organisation that’s providing an invaluable service to the Toowoomba region and beyond.

“Hand Heart Pocket’s purpose is to provide sustainable support that delivers positive outcomes, so we were quite happy to match the charitable efforts of Darling Downs Masonic Lodge to support Sunrise Way to rebuild lives,” Gary said. 

Photo: Darling Downs Masonic Lodge representatives Ian Parry, Maurice Howell and Ken Stephen present the new laptop to Sunrise Way with Kristi standing alongside. 

Find out why you should support Hand Heart Pocket

Kianawah Masonic Lodge with the assistance of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland has donated $2000 to Brisbane charity, Community Friends.

The organisation which provides everything from food, clothing, sheets, blankets and other basic essentials for the homeless and disadvantaged, said the funds will be ‘a big help’, allowing them to purchase a months’ worth of food for their West End Food Stall.

Held every Wednesday afternoon at 4pm, the stall attracts around 150 needy people, with everything given away for free.

Kianawah Lodge Almoner, Bob Clark said it was impressive to see Community Friends founder and fellow Freemason, Mark McDonnell, and his band of volunteers hard at work, providing for those less fortunate.

“What Mark has achieved in the last few years is amazing, especially as they don’t receive any government funding. If Community Friends didn’t provide this service hundreds of people would go without,” Bob said.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark praised Kianawah Lodge for rallying behind this initiative which will change lives for the better.

“Kianawah Lodge has devoted many of their weekends to raising these funds, knowing that every dollar will go towards making a difference for those less fortunate,” Gary said.  

“Support of the homeless and disadvantaged is very much in line with Hand Heart Pocket’s purpose which is about empowering, supporting and enabling humanity in an ever-changing world,” Gary said. 

Photo: Mark McDonnell from Community Friends (front left) accepts a cheque for $2000 from Kianawah Lodge Almoner Bob Clark (front right)

Find out how you can start a fundraiser to support Hand Heart Pocket 

The District Grand Master of North Queensland and his deputy are leading the chorus of support for Hand Heart Pocket’s donation of $290k to fund Camp Quality’s Family Camps in Queensland for the next 12 months.

The pair was invited to stop by a camp put on by the children’s charity on Magnetic Island this past weekend, where 43 children impacted by cancer from North Queensland were able to create memories outside of hospital.

District Grand Master of North Queensland, Les Keane said the visit, although brief, reinforced how important it is for these children to be given the opportunity to thrive, in a fun and relaxed environment.

“To see the smiles on these children’s faces was really special, especially when you know what they’re going through. For many, this was the first time they had been able to leave their hospital bed to enjoy themselves and mix with other children going through a similar situation,” Les said.

“There was a huge team of volunteers too, with some said to have volunteered with Camp Quality for over 20 years. That kind of commitment is hard to come by these days.”

“We are delighted that Hand Heart Pocket has donated $290k on behalf of Freemasons of Queensland, to help ensure state-wide support is available to children impacted by cancer and their families,” he said.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark said Saturday’s announcement which took place in Brisbane, had been a resounding success and that it was something which all Freemasons of Queensland should be proud of, particularly because of the state-wide reach of this donation.

“It was important for us to make sure our donation made a difference in the lives of as many Queensland families, whether they were from regional and rural Queensland or in the metropolitan cities, because our membership like Camp Quality is spread throughout the state,” Gary said.

Find out why you should support Hand Heart Pocket 

Photo: Camp Quality Recreation Program Coordinator Emma Wilkes, Melissa Parsons from Leadlease, North Queensland District Grand Master Les Keane, North Queensland Deputy Grand Master Beresford Whyte and Camp Leader Jeff Brooks. 

Watch Lodge representatives talk about making a difference with Hand Heart Pocket's support 

Outdoor living is a huge part of people’s lives here in Queensland and it will be no different for the eight young people with high care needs living at Youngcare’s Livewell Apartments in Albany Creek, which were officially opened last month.

Members of the local Ionic Prudence Masonic Lodge have donated funds for a new outdoor setting, enabling residents to sit outside and catch up with family and friends or simply soak up the winter sun.

Lodge Master, Michael Churchward said the Lodge was able to donate the outdoor setting with the help of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland.

“This is our way of saying welcome to the neighbourhood. It’s a housewarming present if you like, but in all seriousness we are continually amazed by the work of Youngcare and all that they do to ensure young people with high care needs can lead young lives,” Michael said.

“They’ve done a marvellous job of making the apartments a warm and welcoming place, with all the mod-cons and technology, where the residents can really make it their own and be part of the community, which we think makes all the difference,” he said.

Interestingly, young people seem to have been the focus of the Lodges’ fundraising efforts this year, with the Lodge also having donated $1500 worth of equipment for Mitchelton Special School’s sensory unit for students with autism and over $400 for Queensland’s only children’s hospice, Hummingbird House for the purchase of a glider and ottoman set – all made possible with the support of Hand Heart Pocket.

Chief Executive Officer Gary Mark, commended Ionic Prudence Lodge for being attentive to the needs of their community.

“Like Hand Heart Pocket, the organisations that Ionic Prudence Lodge has chosen to support believe in improving people’s quality of life through innovative support, giving us every reason to match the fundraising efforts of the Lodge,” Gary said.

Photo: Ionic Prudence Lodge representatives John Sheraton and Michael Churchward present a cheque for $800 to Youngcare Chief Executive Officer, Anthony Ryan. 

Watch footage of the official cheque handover

On Saturday 8th July, 150 kids growing up with cancer enjoyed a rare opportunity to play in the snow in sunny Queensland at Camp Quality’s Hand Heart Pocket Family Fun Day at Snow4Kids park, where a new partnership was announced.

The Snow4Kids experience is one of Camp Quality’s Family Fun Days, which offer the chance for families impacted by cancer to reconnect and create memories outside of hospital. It was the first time many kids had seen snow since diagnosis and for some, the first time ever.

The day was made possible by Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland who also announced a donation of $290,000 to fund Camp Quality’s Family Camps in the Queensland community for the next 12 months.

Kylea Tink, Camp Quality CEO says the partnership with Hand Heart Pocket will help Camp Quality support a great number of Queensland families.

“Camp Quality aims to support every Australian child impacted by cancer – be that their own diagnosis or the diagnosis of someone they love. Thanks to Hand Heart Pocket we will be able to focus on ensuring our programs reach all families who need them within the Queensland community,” Kylea said.

At present, Camp Quality provides innovative programs and services to 725 Queensland families impacted by cancer. Camps provide kids with a vital break to strengthen their wellbeing and boost their support networks in an environment filled with fun and optimism.

Camp Quality mum, Elmarie Oberholzer knows firsthand how hard it can be to watch your own kids miss out on the fun. Within five months of moving from New Zealand to Brisbane, her one year- old son, Louis was diagnosed with Leukaemia.

“We had barely found a place to live when Louis got sick. Everything just happened at once, and we just had to start treading water to stay afloat,” Elmarie says. “I first met Camp Quality in the hospital and attended many Camp Quality programs including Family Camp. At Family Camp, you can connect with families in the same situation as you, which is exactly what you need to remember that you aren’t alone.”

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark said it was proud to cover the costs of the camps because it meant Camp Quality could do more for Queensland families impacted by
cancer.

“Camp Quality’s purpose is to give every Australian child impacted by cancer every opportunity to thrive. This resonates with Hand Heart Pocket in that, we are very much for supporting programs that empower people to lead better lives,” Gary said.

This is one of several significant donations that Hand Heart Pocket has announced in a matter of weeks, indicating the increasing focus that Freemasons in Queensland are placing on their charity work.

“We’re all about providing sustainable support that delivers positive outcomes by giving a hand up - not a handout - to communities, to other charities and to individuals,” said Gary.

Photo: Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark hands over a cheque for $290k to Camp Quality Chief Executive Officer, Kylea Tink with Hand Heart Pocket Champion, Jason Brummell standing alongside. 

A donation of almost $12,000 has been handed over to Carinya Home for the Aged in Atherton enabling the purchase of a range of specialised equipment to ensure the safe and dignified care of residents.

Four electric beds, two bariatric wheelchairs and a bariatric shower/commode chair will be purchased with the funds donated by Atherton Duke of Connaught and Fraser Masonic Lodges in conjunction with Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland.

Atherton Duke of Connaught representative Les Simpson and his wife Barbara said that they wanted to thank locals for getting behind the Lodges’ fundraising efforts.

“On behalf of the Masonic Fraternity, we would like to thank the community for their support, we couldn’t have done it without them,” Les said.

“Enhancing residents’ wellbeing and empowering staff to care for residents in the most effective manner was the intention behind our donation,” Les said. 

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark endorsed the efforts of the masons in the Tablelands.

“I congratulate both Atherton Duke of Connaught and Fraser Masonic Lodges for taking the lead to raise funds for this vital equipment,” Gary said.

“For many years the Lodges have worked to give a hand up to those in need, enabling people to lead better lives which Hand Heart Pocket fully supports. That’s why we were ready to match their latest fundraising efforts and effectively double the impact of their donation,” Gary said. 

Photo: Atherton Duke of Connaught and Fraser Masonic Lodges joined forces to raise funds for the local Aged Care facility. Photo courtesy The Tablelander.  

Find out who Hand Heart Pocket helps 

Watch footage of the official cheque handover

More young Queenslanders with high care needs are set to get the support they need, to stay at home and out of inappropriate housing after Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland today announced its renewed support to the tune of $150,000 for the 2017 round of Youngcare’s At Home Care Grants (AHCG) program.   

The grants provide one-off funding between $2,000 and $10,000 for equipment, home modifications and emergency respite for young people aged 18-65, who are at risk of entering inappropriate housing such as aged care, allowing them to remain at home with their families, for as long as possible.

Youngcare Chief Executive Officer, Anthony Ryan, said that the additional funding would assist Youngcare to deliver on its mission to ensure young people regardless of their care needs lead young lives with greater choice, dignity and independence.

Too many young Australians with high care needs are being left behind. These young people deserve the freedom to choose how they live their lives— and it’s up to all of us to make sure that happens,” Anthony said.

 In 2016, $250,000 was awarded to 44 Queensland families, enabling them to keep their loved ones at home and Hand Heart Pocket’s donation of $150,000 directly benefited 30 of those families.  “Yet, the reality is that a total of 87 people applied for grants with a value of almost $640,000, meaning that 43 people missed out, simply due to a lack of funding” he said

“With the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) the disability sector is seeing positive change and Youngcare is excited by the opportunity to scale up the options available to young people.  While working with the NDIS we continue to deliver our grants which are so vital to ensure that families are getting the support they need.  The renewed partnership with Hand Heart Pocket will enable us to again help more young people with high care needs to live the young lives we all deserve.”

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark, said that upon hearing the plight of these families who were often physically, emotionally and financially drained, Hand Heart Pocket was compelled to do more.

“Last year following our initial donation of $150,000, Hand Heart Pocket had the privilege of sitting on the panel alongside other donors, disability academics, health professionals and Youngcare staff who shortlisted and awarded the AHCG Queensland round,” Gary said.

“We came away with a great sense of pride, because we could see the difference our support would make, yet the number of families missing out on grants left us wanting to do more. We are delighted that Youngcare has once again accepted our support this year. May our combined efforts make a significant difference for more young Queenslanders with high care needs,” he said. 

Photo: Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark (centre) hands over a cheque for $150K to Youngcare Chief Executive Officer, Anthony Ryan (centre right), with the Hand Heart Pocket Champions (far right) and members of Ionic Prudence Lodge standing alongside (far left). 

Watch footage of the official cheque handover

The state’s largest drop in and support centre for the homeless, 139 Club, is set to extend services from five to seven days a week, as part of a 12-month pilot program thanks to a $340,000 donation from Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland.

Announced this morning in Fortitude Valley at a morning tea with some of the centre’s clients, the donation will fund a pilot program that is expected to allow 139 Club to build on their efforts to provide better outcomes for the homeless.  

139 Club Chief Executive Officer, Sara Harrup, said that the donation will make all the difference to their clients and support a broader strategy to make a long term, visible impact on homelessness in the river city through the expansion of services and innovative support.   

“Homelessness is a daily struggle that doesn’t go away on the weekends. Being open seven days will enable us to provide more continuity of support and reach those we may not reach on other days – meaning those sleeping rough in Brisbane will no longer be left to get by on their own over the weekend,” Sarah said.

“139 Club has always been a home for the day for those without one and our ethos is to build resilience and promote dignity, increasing people’s capacity to sustain a better life in the long term, with support to find suitable accommodation,” she said.  

From October, 139 Club will be able to provide essential services such as meals, showers, laundry facilities, day beds, and medical attention on Saturdays and Sundays as well as a scaled back version of individual case support for emergency situations. An increased focus on social inclusion such as leisure activities will also be implemented on weekends.

“We’re very hopeful that this 12-month pilot program will provide us with the opportunity to secure longer-term funding to have a lasting impact on Brisbane’s homeless,” Sara said.

Those doing it tough agree. Angelo lives on the streets and is a frequent visitor at 139 Club.  “Opening on the weekends will be like gold.  It will help a lot of people - they are going hungry on the weekends. Now there will be a safe place to come, to get food, rest and friendship.”

Grace, another person doing it tough, agrees. “It’s a really great thing. It will help so much. I’ve just got out of a violent relationship and at 139 Club you feel safe - it’s somewhere to talk to other people and feel ok.”

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark, said that maximising the efforts of organisations that are at the coal face was central to the decision to provide funding to 139 Club.  

“Support of the homeless and marginalised members of our community aligns with Hand Heart Pocket’s values which are about alleviating suffering and misfortune to empower people to lead better lives,” he said.

“Hand Heart Pocket is proud to support 139 Club, an organisation that is on our doorstep here in Fortitude Valley. This initiative has the potential to make a tangible difference for those impacted by homelessness in Brisbane and beyond,” Gary said. 

Photo: Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark hands over a cheque for $340K to 139 Club Chief Executive Officer, Sara Harrup with Hand Heart Pocket Champions standing alongside.  

For over 20 years Cittamani Hospice Service on the Sunshine Coast has provided in-home palliative care support to over 3000 terminally ill patients and their families.

Today there is a growing need for their services in the region prompting the local Masonic Lodge to lend a hand.

Waverley-Palmwoods Lodge with the support of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland, recently handed over two alternating air-mattresses which will add to the catalogue of specialised and essential equipment that the organisation loans out to families, including hospital beds, wheelchairs, commodes and more.

Lodge Secretary, Bill Niven said that making a difference on a local level has always been important to the Lodge.

“To think, that, this will help Cittamani provide comfort to more terminally ill people is so worthwhile in our eyes,” Bill said.

“Last year, we donated three wheelchairs and were keen to offer more support, particularly seeing as Cittamani provides its services free of charge, right from palliative care nurses, social and pastoral care workers, volunteers, through to bereavement support,” he said.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark praised Waverley-Palmwoods Lodge for standing by the local initiative.

“Showing compassion to those who are terminally ill and their families is something that Hand Heart Pocket can identify with, giving us every reason to match Waverley-Palmwoods Lodge’s donation,” Gary said.

“Our purpose is to provide sustainable support that delivers positive outcomes through engagement with communities and this is a shining example of what can be achieved when we work together,” he said.

Photo: (from back) Waverley-Palmwoods Lodge representatives Graeme McIntyre, Brad Imberger and David Ledger with (from front) Cittamani’s Jo Newman, Sue Hart from Bunnings and Lodge Secretary Bill Niven.  

Find out why you should support Hand Heart Pocket

 

Toowoomba’s Sunrise Way Rehabilitation Centre which is home to those recovering from drug and alcohol addiction has been given a hand up from Darling Downs Masonic Lodge.

Lodge Secretary, Ken Stephen said the new laptop, which the Lodge donated, with the help of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland, would support residents in their rehabilitation, improving their quality of life.

“It’s been fantastic to be able to provide this on-going support to Sunrise Way,” Ken said.

“Earlier in the year the Lodge, through their own funds, donated a projector and projector screen, so all these additional resources will assist in making the rehabilitation program more engaging and effective. The new resources are currently being used during group psychosocial education and individual counselling,” he said.

“Similarly, late last year, the Lodge donated a commercial dishwasher with Hand Heart Pocket’s assistance, ensuring residents have the facilities to wash up after preparing and cooking their own meals.”

“Without the presence of Sunrise Way in our community many people would be worse off, so we’re very supportive of their work, “Ken said.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark, commended Darling Downs Lodge for getting behind a local organisation that’s providing an invaluable service to the Toowoomba region and beyond.

“Hand Heart Pocket’s purpose is to provide sustainable support that delivers positive outcomes, so we were quite happy to match the charitable efforts of Darling Downs Masonic Lodge to support Sunrise Way to rebuild lives,” Gary said. 

Photo: Darling Downs Masonic Lodge representatives Ian Parry, Maurice Howell and Ken Stephen present the new laptop to Sunrise Way with Kristi standing alongside. 

Find out why you should support Hand Heart Pocket

Kianawah Masonic Lodge with the assistance of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland has donated $2000 to Brisbane charity, Community Friends.

The organisation which provides everything from food, clothing, sheets, blankets and other basic essentials for the homeless and disadvantaged, said the funds will be ‘a big help’, allowing them to purchase a months’ worth of food for their West End Food Stall.

Held every Wednesday afternoon at 4pm, the stall attracts around 150 needy people, with everything given away for free.

Kianawah Lodge Almoner, Bob Clark said it was impressive to see Community Friends founder and fellow Freemason, Mark McDonnell, and his band of volunteers hard at work, providing for those less fortunate.

“What Mark has achieved in the last few years is amazing, especially as they don’t receive any government funding. If Community Friends didn’t provide this service hundreds of people would go without,” Bob said.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark praised Kianawah Lodge for rallying behind this initiative which will change lives for the better.

“Kianawah Lodge has devoted many of their weekends to raising these funds, knowing that every dollar will go towards making a difference for those less fortunate,” Gary said.  

“Support of the homeless and disadvantaged is very much in line with Hand Heart Pocket’s purpose which is about empowering, supporting and enabling humanity in an ever-changing world,” Gary said. 

Photo: Mark McDonnell from Community Friends (front left) accepts a cheque for $2000 from Kianawah Lodge Almoner Bob Clark (front right)

Find out how you can start a fundraiser to support Hand Heart Pocket 

Some of Hinchinbrook Shire’s youngest and oldest residents have been touched by the generosity of their local Masonic Lodge, Hinchinbrook Cordelia Lodge.

In conjunction with a Dollar for Dollar Subsidy from Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland, Hinchinbrook Cordelia Lodge has donated $400 to the Lower Herbert Blue Light Association and $750 to Café Connect, a local outreach service of Alzheimer’s Australia (Qld).

Lodge Worshipful Master, Cliff Blain said essential services provided by the two organisations would be enhanced with these funds.

“Our contribution is in recognition of all those working towards making our community an inclusive one,” he said.

“One supports our youth by providing a variety of activities in a drug and alcohol free environment. The other enables people with Alzheimer’s and their carers to meet those in a similar situation, to enjoy each other’s company, helping to eliminate the loneliness and frustration that can set in when diagnosed.”

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark said it’s fantastic to see the Lodge throw its support behind two very worthy causes.

“I congratulate Hinchinbrook Cordelia Lodge for taking an interest in their community, particularly those in need,” Gary said.

“Hand Heart Pocket recognises the initiative taken by this Lodge to assist these organisations to continue to make a difference in their community,” he said.  

Photo: Hinchinbrook Cordelia Lodge members Ken Robson and Cliff Blain present President of the Lower Herbert Blue Light Association Snr Constable Shelley Milns with a cheque from recent fundraising efforts. 

Find out more about the important work of Hand Heart Pocket, the charity of Freemasons Queensland.  

Members are invited to our ‘Year in Review’ event where we will outline our achievements over the past year and hear from some of our charity partners.

When: Monday November 4, 2019
            5.15pm (for a 6pm start)

Where: Brisbane Airport Conference Centre
             2 Dryandra Road, Brisbane Q 4008

Places are limited. Subsidised transport will be available from Gympie, Cooroy, Maroochydore, Caboolture, Toowoomba and Ipswich. 

To express your interest in attending, please email info@handheartpocket.org.au by Thursday 24th October 2019.