Freemasons boost Artizan International

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A Harrogate charity which empowers and supports people with disabilities to meet their full potential through therapeutic craft activities, has been given a £2,000 boost from local Freemasons.

Members of Harlow Lodge, which meets at Harrogate’s Masonic Hall, successfully applied to the Province of Yorkshire West Riding’s Provincial Grand Master’s Fund for a grant for Bilton-based Artizan International, formerly known as Craft Aid International.

The charity runs free weekly craft workshops for differently-able adults in Harrogate, Ripon and Leeds, and also runs workshops for long-term hospital inpatients.

This provides vital opportunities for people with disabilities to get out of their care homes or hospital beds, increase their social interaction, make new friends, build confidence and learn new skills.

It also runs a Mosaics for Schools project, which involves training differently-able people in mosaics skills, and then taking them in to local primary schools, to teach the children how to make a large-scale mosaic for their school.

Additionally, it has recently started new after school craft clubs for children with disabilities.

Charity founder Suzie Hart said: “I would like to say a big thank you to the members of Harlow Lodge for this donation.

“As we are expanding our services, this money will allow us to purchase craft equipment and raw materials for the free therapeutic crafts sessions that we run in the community.”

Harlow Lodge charity steward David Simister said: “This is a great organisation that supports disabled people, not just in Harrogate, but in Ripon and Leeds too.”

He added: “Each year, the Provincial Grand Master’s Fund gives grants totalling £200,000 to a wide range of charities, schools, community groups and hospices across the geographical area of the Province of Yorkshire West Riding.

“And just like Artizan International, there are a huge amount of charities in the Harrogate District who could do with a financial lift to help them continue the great work they are doing within our communities.”

Further information about the Provincial Grand Master’s Fund is available from the Province of Yorkshire West Riding website, https://www.wrprovince.org.uk