Good work Greg and Gioreen!

Cheque received for TLC for KidsAfter hearing about the District Charity Appeal for TLC for Kids, WBro. Greg Todio happened to mention it to his young daughter Gioreen one evening. A few minutes later young Gioreen appeared with a crayon picture she had made and offered it to her father saying maybe he could sell it to raise money for the children. Without hesitation Greg took the picture to every Lodge he visited for the next six months or so. The picture was “auctioned” or “sold” at many of those meetings, always being returned to Greg to be auctioned again. But not wasn’t the whole story, as Greg also brought with him a large jar so that those who were unlucky enough to miss out on the picture could make a donation anyway! Greg’s determination and Lodge members generosity resulted in Greg presenting a cheque in excess of $650 to the appeal.  District Coordinator VWBro. David Seymour is shown receiving the cheque from Gioreen and Greg together with the picture that helped raise such a wonderful donation. President of the Board of Benevolence, RWBro. Frank Fordyce, is on hand to assist. “Greg has a strong ethic where charity is concerned and it is obvious that he has passed this on to his children”, David said. ” We are very grateful to Greg and Gioreen for their hard work and generosity”.

Ring Pulls for Charity

Some of the 1.4 million ring pulls.Children from Ararat West Primary School have been collecting Ring Pull Tabs for the last six years.

It started in a small way when for the first two years they collected tabs for an appeal by the Bendigo Bank to raise funds to provide a wheelchair for a 16 year old Bendigo girl. When that appeal ended, they then donated the tabs to WBro. George Ball of Derrimut Daylight Lodge, who with the assistance of WBro. Alan Gladstone sells the tabs for scrap and the funds are donated to Charity.

In the first year they collected 200,000 tabs, about 55kg, but by 2011 this had greatly increased to 350kg or a massive 1.4 million tabs!

The children receive a certificate when they have collected 500 tabs and further certificates for higher amounts. In June and December the top six families receive a trophy and certificate. In 2009 one family collected 115,00 tabs while two others collected 75,000 tabs.

Some of these children are unlikely to receive trophies for sporting activities, but have developed organizational skills and long term dedication to tasks and are proud to receive their trophies and certificates. This is a beginning of an understanding of community service.

Surely this is an activity than can be copied by other schools or organizations.

Thanks to Ms Helen Kirkpatrick of Ararat West Primary School for the information above.



New wheelchair presented

Alans new chair.Members of the Derrimut Daylight Masonic Lodge gathered on Monday to present a new motorised wheelchair to one of their members, Alan Cashan. Alan suffers from MS, having been diagnosed 33years ago when he was just a young man of 30 years. He has lost all use of his arms and legs and has been confined to a motorised wheelchair for many years, and after eleven years of continuous use his last chair required replacement.

Alan has been a freemason since 1975 and despite his handicap has attended the monthly meetings of his Lodge regularly. His fellow Lodge members decided to assist him in acquiring a new chair, but were staggered to find that a new chair would cost about $26,000, an amount far beyond Alan’s capability. Even after the government’s grant there still remained over $16,000 to find. The Lodge appealed to the Freemasons Victoria Benevolent Fund on Alan’s behalf for assistance and together with some funds raised by the Lodge, the remaining money was raised.

At the presentation Ms Robyn Soulsby, an occupational therapist with MS Australia, and who has looked after Alan, spoke at the presentation giving those present information on MS, and its effects on those who suffered with the disease. She also explained the details of Alan’s new chair, in particular how difficult it was to control a chair with nothing but a chin control, which Alan has to do. She also stated that in this regard Alan was a “star”. To prove the point Alan gave a short demonstration of his ability to “drive” around the Lodge room.
Alan expressed his thanks to the Lodge and the Benevolent Fund and assured everyone that his new chair was a 300% improvement on the old one. He can now enjoy a more comfortable lifestyle at his Care facility.

Williamstown Masonic Centre Dedicated

Williamstown Masonic Centre

In an impressive ceremony, the newly refurbished and renovated Masonic Centre at Electra Street, Williamstown, was dedicated by a team of Grand Officers led by the Most Worshipful Grand Master Vaughan Werner last Saturday afternoon. The crowd of over 150 Freemasons and non-freemasons witnessed the ancient ceremony which was conducted with dignity and pride by members of the 2011 Grand Ceremonial Team. The Grand Master pointed out to the guests that the ceremony would be almost identical to that which would have been carried out at the original dedication 120 years ago. At the conclusion of the formal ceremony guests were invited to the Supper Room to enjoy light finger-food refreshments and the opportunity to catch up with old  friends and meet new ones. It was also achance to view the renovations and additions to the building that was built in 1891. During the refreshments a commemorative plaque was unveiled by the Grand Master ab;y assisted by the Immediate Past Grand Master Garry Sebo and the Deputy Grand Master Bob Jones.

Tje Masonic Centre was also opened to the public on the following day when a number of visitors called in to see the newly re-opened building and to enquire about Freemasonry.

Open Night to be held at Willliamstown

Everything you’ve always wanted to know abour Freemasonry but were afraid to ask.

Ever wondered what goes on inside a Freemasons Lodge? Then your curiosity could be answered if you attend an Open Night to be held at the Williamstown Masonic Centre at 21 Electra Street, Williamstown on Wednesday 23rd November commencing at 7.30pm sharp.

The organisers of the meeting invite Freemasons and their partners to attend and to bring along non-freemasons of their acquaintance to find out what it is that Freemasons do. Members of the public who do not know a Freemason are also invite. The evening will start at 7.30pm sharp and there will be light refreshments served no later than 9.00pm.

In order that we can arrange the catering and sufficient seating it is necessary to register your attendance by contacting Peter Murdoch on o4o7 932 860 or by email on

An entertaining and informative evening is promised.

Williamstown Masonic Centre Open Day

Following it’s dedication on Saturday October 22nd, the Williamstown Masonic Centre will open it’s doors to the public between 10.00am and 2.00pm on Sunday 23rd October. This will provide an opportunity for anyone who is interested to see the newly refurbished building and meet with local Freemasons who will answer any questions concerning freemasonry in general or how it operates within the immediate area.

The newly re-opened building shows off how modern architecture can be made to creatively blend with the old. The original Lodge room was constructed over a century ago and now boasts a modern supper room and kitchen facility that is all 21st century.

Take this opportunity to visit the Masonic Centre at 21 Electra Street, Williamstown and see for yourself where freemasonry in the Western Suburbs will be operating into the future.

Dedication of Williamstown Masonic Centre

After extensive repairs and refurbishment, the Lodge Room at the Williamstown Masonic Centre will be Dedicated for masonic use on Saturday October 22nd by the Grand Master of  The United Grand Lodge of Victoria, Vaughan Werner assisted by Senior Grand Lodge Officers.

There will be a media conference at 1.00pm followed by the dedication ceremony at 2.00pm sharp. Afternoon tea will be served at approximately 4.00pm.

If you are nterested in attending contact Peter Plytus on 0402 060 895.

For more details click  Williamstown Dedication – Freemasons Victoria

Special Olympics come to Werribee

The Special Olympics are an international voluntary programme of sports training and competition for people of all ages with an intellectual disability. Sports involved include aquatics, track & field, basketball, bocce, gymnastics, soccer, softball, tennis and ten pin bowling.

Special Olympics Volunteers

Special Olympics Volunteers

Starting in Victoria in 1975 the programme has been growing ever since, and Werribee was host of the latest competition over the weekend of April 16th and 17th. Freemasonry Victoria have been involved with the Special Olympics for many years and this event gave the freemasons of Western District 117 the opportunity to do their bit. They were asked to provide and help prepare lunches for approximately 200 athletes and volunteers on each of the two days of competition.

The task was to provide; 400 bread rolls, 400 muesli bars, 400 fruit juice drinks and 400 pieces of fruit which duly arrived on the Saturday morning.

A band of volunteers was formed to make up the ham and salad rolls and pack the lunch bags prior to delivering them to the respective venues. The weekend went off without a hitch and the volunteers all agreed that it was a fun occasion as well as providing some “hands on” benevolence to the local community.

David Seymour, District Coordinator Western District 117 would like to thank all the volunteers that gave freely of their time and also those companies that generously provided the rolls, muesli bars, fruit juice and fruit.

New initiates dinner

The Western District will host a dinner for all members initiated since January 1st 2010.

It will be held at the Yarraville Club, 135 Stephen Street, Yarraville on Friday October 15th at 7.00pm. Cost $40 a head for a three course dinner, drinks at bar prices.

New initiates are invited to bring their partners and non freemasons if they wish. Seats are limited so – first come – first served.

Looking forward to a great night and I have it on good advice that the Deputy Grand Master will be there!

Western District Tops the Charts in Good Friday Appeal

The Western Masonic District topped the charts with their collection of $11,988.60 at the annual Good Friday Appeal for the Royal Children’s Hospital.

Working in conjunction with Uncle Bob’s Club, the Masonic Districts in the greater Melboune area shake collection cans at 7-Eleven outlets in their respective Districts. Western District volunteers manned no less than 14 outlets and almost doubled their 2009 figure. In total the Masonic Districts collected almost $37,000, approximately a 30% increase on last year.

Western District Coordinator, David Seymour, praised the efforts of all the volunteers and paid special tribute to Steve Foss for his dedicated coordination of the volunteers, many of who were not freemasons. Family and friends of freemasons willingly gave up a few hours of their time to help raise money for this worthiest of causes.

“I am delighted with the amount we collected this year, but I guess we have set ourselves a huge challenge to improve next year”, David said, “but with the calibre of men and women who assist us each year I am sure we will be up to it”.