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A charity that supports women fleeing domestic violence has been given a £5,000 boost from Knaresborough Freemasons.

Michael Wrigglesworth, Knaresborough Priory Lodge, John Birkenshaw, Freemasons’ area charity committee chairman, Jenny Robinson from Harrogate Women’s Refuge, and Claire Glen from Buddy Bag Foundation

Thanks to the members of Knaresborough Priory Lodge, the Buddy Bag Foundation can now fill 200 ‘buddy bags’ containing clothing, toiletries, books and other items for children of various ages, which are given to mothers who have had to leave their homes suddenly, and often without any belongings.

The Lodge, which meets in the market town’s Masonic Hall, on York Place, secured the funding via the Freemasons’ Province of Yorkshire West Riding’s Provincial Grand Master’s Fund.

Each year this fund gives grants totalling £200,000 to good causes including charities, schools, youth organisations and hospices across its geographical footprint.

It is based on the old West Riding, geographically ranging from Sheffield in the South to Ripon in the North and Goole in the East to Waddington in the West.

Knaresborough Priory Lodge charity representative Mike Wrigglesworth said: “I’m delighted we were able to secure this important funding for the Buddy Bag Foundation.

“These bags, which are distributed to refuges across the Province, including Harrogate, contain essentials which are then given to mothers who have had to leave their homes quickly.

“Due to primarily violent situations, either mental or physical, they often leave without being able to take any belongings with them, and are taken in by a refuge for their and their children’s safety.

“In addition to our financial support, the Masonic Teddies for Loving Care Charity has also donated a large number of teddies, one of which will go into each Buddy Bag.

“One the three principles that Freemasonry is founded on is charity, and I’m delighted that we have been able to support the Buddy Bag Foundation to the tune of £5,000.”

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