In upholding their motto, “making good men better,” the Freemasons of Smithers recently donated funds to a number of community organizations, that depend on groups like the Freemasons to help build the community.
With over 200 jurisdictions world wide the Freemasons build stronger communities around the globe by helping to build better men at every aspect of life.
Here in Smithers the Freemasons are about 60 members strong and are hoping to see those numbers grow in the future.
“I think in order to continue to grow we have to be seen to be relevant to the young men of today and into the future,” said Tedd Bobb. “I think we bring a traditional value system but those values are never going to change and I think it’s a great organization that mixes together men of different generations.”
While other community based clubs post events to raise money for charity the Freemasons donate funds directly from it’s members without any outside solicitation to the public. This year they donated to four different organizations including the Brain Injury Society, the Bulkley Valley Hospice, the Salvation Army and one of their own initiatives the Cancer Car Service.
In 1987 the Freemasons partnered with the Canadian Cancer Society to provide a cancer car service, taking away the worries for families and patients when they need to get to cancer treatments. The masons collectively buy a car and volunteers drive patients to their treatments as needed. The masons currently have a program in Vancouver and soon hope to have one here in the north once the Cancer clinic in Prince George is built.
“We will provide volunteer drivers,” explains Bobb.
“We buy the cars and that charity is funded by the members from their own lodges. We all individually contribute to that and fund it. We don’t go to the public and solicit funds.”
Freemasons want to assist communities by teaching valuable lessons rooted in tradition. A notion that has been dwindling in recent years. However, with their continued dedication those vales remain intact in Smithers.
After experiencing first hand how important the work organizations like the Brain Injury Society do, Tony Greco wanted the Freemasons to help ensure they have the financial support they need to continue their life saving work.
“When I saw the Brain Injury Society here, and their system at the community center where people who have experienced a brain injury can go there and swim or work out, there’s no fee and that’s there for the rest of my life,” said Greco. “So that’s all from the Brain Injury Society, it’s all from the community so I thought this was a way of giving something back.”