Members, charity partners, supporters and stakeholders of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland came together last night for the annual Year in Review Event to hear about the organisation’s support of contemporary families and communities across the state.
Held at the Brisbane Airport Conference Centre, the evening was also the backdrop for the launch of Hand Heart Pocket’s refined philanthropic approach in support of initiatives to improve outcomes for youth at risk. Chairman Alasdair Begley explained that for the next three years the organisation would direct the majority of its significant and flagship funding towards this area of work. A whiteboard video shared some of the stark figures associated with this cohort. He also stressed that grassroots initiatives identified by Freemason Lodges that aligned with their broader strategy would continue to be supported.
The philanthropic activities and achievements of the financial year were captured in a highlights video, showing the impacts and outcomes that have been made possible. It was also reported that 154 grants had been provided last financial year to the value of $3.58 million, including in-kind support to 20 initiatives. For the most part, the larger grants supported capital projects and infrastructure to enable charities to deliver essential services. At a grassroots level, 84 initiatives identified by Freemason Lodges had been backed, totaling $538,000. This was up by $163,000 from the previous financial year and demonstrates how Lodges are banding together and working with Hand Heart Pocket to make a bigger difference in their community. 60 individuals also received a hand up through the Benevolence Assistance program. This included those impacted by the Townsville Floods earlier in the year.
From a promotional perspective, it was communicated that by signing on as the Naming Rights Sponsor of the River 2 Reef Charity Ride in Mackay from 2019-2021, Hand Heart Pocket and the Mackay District Freemasons could ensure that a third local charity could benefit from the event to support men’s mental health in the region. Hand Heart Pocket was also able to help the Mackay District Freemasons to elevate the profile of their charity work in the region and the important role they play in their community. Similarly, a Men’s Health Awareness Campaign is being conducted in partnership with CheckUP and Freemason Lodges to benefit communities across the state.
Special thanks go to Hand Heart Pocket’s charity partners who presented as part of an interactive Gallery Walk, providing attendees with more insight into the impacts being made at a significant and flagship level. They included Bloomhill Cancer Care, Marine Rescue Hervey Bay, Guide Dogs Queensland and Pinaroo Roma Inc. Hand Heart Pocket board member Sandy Blackburn-Wright also conducted an educational piece on how social impact can be achieved through social enterprise.
Hand Heart Pocket is extremely grateful to all those that attended yesterday’s event and look forward to sharing our impacts into the future.