East Kent Provincial News 2014

Catching Lives

Manor of Faversham Lodge No 8248 Supports the "Catching Lives" Charity

James Duff, Chairman of trustees of the Catching Lives charity, receiving a cheque from the Lodge

In our earlier report entitled “Two Men, One Guvnor”, it was reported that Manor of Faversham Lodge No 8248 raised £500 for the Canterbury-based charity Catching Lives. More recently the lodge raised a further £635 for the charity at a social event held immediately after one of their meetings.

The lodge meeting itself was limited to just thirty minutes while the ladies and other guests assembled downstairs in the old refectory where they were welcomed by Mrs Daphne Millett, the Worshipful Master’s wife. On completion of the meeting, the ladies and other guests joined the lodge members in the fine old lodge room to be entertained by two speakers.

The first speaker, Manor of Faversham's Master, WBro Antony Millett – who is also a Faversham Town Guide – gave a most interesting talk about the Faversham Masonic Hall, formerly a Tudor boy's grammar school. After a brief talk on the fascinating history of the ancient building, Antony introduced James Duff, Chairman of trustees of the Catching Lives charity who, before receiving the cheque from the lodge, gave a short talk on the work of the charity.

He pointed out that on any given night in Canterbury, there are over thirty homeless people sleeping rough.

Catching Lives runs the Canterbury Open Centre in Station Road East where support is given to rough sleepers, the homeless and vulnerably-housed people in Canterbury and East Kent. The charity helps those who have, for many reasons, fallen through the gaps in society and have nowhere else to turn. It works towards ending the harm caused to individuals, families and the community by homelessness, rough sleeping and insecure housing. To this end the Open Centre offers a very wide range of services for its clients.

Additionally, from 1st December until 28th February, and in conjunction with Churches Together in Canterbury, night shelters are provided to give overnight refuge during the worst months of winter. At other times of the year resources are limited to providing advice on where it is best or worst to sleep rough.

The charity's work costs £10,000 per week on average and no funding is received from the government or other agencies. Most of the support is carried out by volunteers and donations of time and skills are as important as money, food, toiletries, sleeping bags, duvets and warm clothing.

Manor of Faversham Lodge is pleased to have been able to provide a small level of support and hope that, by raising awareness, more support will be forthcoming particularly at Christmas time. Read more at www.catchinglives.org