News and Updates from Washington Masonic Charities !

Monthly News & Updates for 
November 2016
Please enjoy the WA Masonic Charities February newsletter - if you're a Lodge or Grand Lodge leader, we are counting on you to forward this to your Lodge email distribution lists!

In this Issue


MakeaDifference
Make a Difference at the Holidays by Supporting Children's and Senior's Basic Needs

As Masons, our commitment to distressed older adults and children runs deep - not only for those related to the Fraternity, but as our closing charge says, "every human being has a claim to your kind offices...do good unto all."

I am asking you to help today by making a contribution this holiday season.  I am also asking you also if you will help by sharing this request with the Brethren in your Lodge and District.  Washington Masonic Charities is your Jurisdiction's charitable organization, and we are on the ground directly helping Masons, widows, and members of the general public every day.

Our case managers directly serve more than 650 seniors each year (more than half are Masons and widows).  Through the  contributions of you and others, we have helped feed, clothe, and support hundreds of disadvantaged youth throughout the state.  You can be assured that your contribution does vital work for those who need it most.

100% of each gift we receive from this appeal between now and December 31st will be used to support our Children's Basic Needs, and our Senior Emergency Needs programs.  

Your generous contribution will help provide food, clothing, shoes, and essential toiletries for young people, and will help assure that our seniors have food, clothing, heat and shelter.

Please, give generously! 
Thank you in advance for taking a moment to reflect on how each of us can make a difference as a Mason and as one who is involved.
-Ken Gibson, Executive Director

How to give:
1. By check: Basic & Emergency Needs c/o WA Masonic Charities, PO Box 65830 University Place, WA 98464
2. By Text: 

Directors_Corner
The staff at Washington Masonic Charities and I have been busy traveling across the state to help make sure that everyone in the Masonic family knows that we are a resource. 

The opportunity to meet and get to know Masons and their Ladies in every corner of our state has been truly enjoyable.

One of my goals has been to find ways that Washington Masonic Charities can be both a partner with Lodges, but also help motivate, encourage, and leverage local charitable activities.  I've been humbled to see the response.

Nearly 50% of Washington Lodges are participating in this year's WA Masonic Charities - Grand Lodge Scholarship program. We've collaborated with more than a dozen lodges on charitable efforts, including assisting seniors and disadvantage youth in our communities.  We currently have 26 Lodges signed up for the Masons Helping Neighbors program and more.  Together, we have helped more than 450 older adults this Masonic year, and have contributed to the well-being of hundreds of disadvantaged children around the state.

This outpouring of goodwill is amazing, and I continue to be thankful every day that I have the great pleasure and honor of helping this Fraternity become better at "doing good unto all."  Let's keep up the good work!
- Br. Ken Gibson, MNPL, Executive Director
Outreach
Byron Cregeur, Outreach Services Director Discussing Aging Your Way
Putting the Out in Outreach!
Masonic Outreach Services staff have been busy throughout Washington.  Since the beginning of our fiscal year (May 1), our staff have served more than 450 individuals.  We are on track to serve many more than our usual 650 plus older adults.

Our case managers - who are really more like advocates and systems navigators - have been spending their time tending to the multitude of issues that older adults face today.  Sadly, most people are not prepared financially for old age, and so much of the work we do is about helping individuals and families of older adults to connect with available local community resources.  We have had great success in doing this, and often are able to find financial resources for individuals that help them to be able to remain at home and not have the burden of anxiety that aging can sometimes bring on.

A new workshop has been piloted this month called "Aging Your Way."  This workshop has been put together, in large part, by volunteer and Steilacoom Lodge #2 member Gary Emmons.  Gary spent the last ten years of his career with the Social Security Administration and has more than 15,000 cases to his credit.  He has been able to bring a unique and important point of view and experience to his volunteer work, and we are very appreciative.  This workshop will be provided again in January in Olympia, and we are exploring opportunities to bring it around the state in 2017.  Information is provided by elder law attorneys and financial experts, and this workshop is not only available for older adults, but is also geared toward younger people to help them both plan for their own future needs, as well as understand how they may be able to assist their aging loved ones.
MMSAP
Larry Newman of Newman/Stecher and NMFC training educators in Selah, WA
Masonic Student Assistance Program
On November 7 and 8, Washington Masonic Charities in collaboration with the National Masonic Foundation for Children provided a much needed and appreciated Masonic Student Assistance Program in Selah, just outside of Yakima.

Paul Hudson, Assistant Principal at Selah Middle School enthusiastically engaged with us to bring the program to his community after seeing a presentation delivered at the Association of Washington School Administrators conference in Spokane this June.  Karen Owen, Principal of Salish Middle School in the North Thurston School District (and wife of Grand Secretary Emeritus, RWB David Owen) has been central in helping us to connect with schools and school districts in Washington.

This program provided training for thirty four educators and administrators from ten schools in four school districts in eastern Washington.  

The focus of the program is on a segment of the student population known as "Tier II."  On any given day, most kids go about their business of learning, are on time to class, and don't cause disruption.  These are Tier I kids.  The Masonic Student Assistance Program provides a strengths and assets based approach to helping kids who are struggling with attendance, learning, and behavioral issues a way to re-engage positively in the classroom.  Student Assistance Programs such as this one, have been proven not only to improve academic outcomes, improve attendance, and lead to higher participation and graduation - in some cases they are able to save lives by preventing youth suicide.

This program is currently in nineteen states across the US, and is endorsed by the Conference of Grand Masters of North America.  It was developed and led by Masons, and we at Washington Masonic Charities are proud to have it be a core part of our children's programs.

We are working toward growing this program to be able to conduct at least two in western Washington and two in eastern Washington each year. 

Stay tuned for more information!
Scholarships_Update
Committee Chairman Darrick Hayman Supervising the Team
There are currently 83 Lodges signed up to participate in the Washington Masonic Charities - Grand Lodge Scholarship Program. That is nearly 50% of all Washington Lodges!

This year we have asked Lodges to register with us online so that we can be more effective in supporting the effort as well as to assure that each young person who applies has a fair shot at going through the process.  

Kids may apply at http://www.washboard.org and by searching for Washington Masonic Charities.  Members of DeMolay, Rainbow, and Job's Daughters may apply through their organization's process.

We have also extended the decision process to provide more time for the Lodges as well as the District Deputies to go through their review and to get the materials back to the Committee for final review.

In 2015 a Grand Lodge Resolution placed the committee and responsibility of the scholarship activity formally under Washington Masonic Charities.  The Committee evaluated what was working and what needed more attention or to be updated.  Changes were made accordingly, and we will evaluate how the changes made this year have worked out, and will make adjustments next year.

All of us on the Scholarship Committee appreciate your patience and flexibility as we make adjustments - in the end, it is all designed to improve the experience for and better serve the kids!

Fiscal
Working Together - Fiscal Sponsorship
How Lodges and WA Masonic Charities Can Work Together 

One of our goals is to help Blue Lodges be successful in their charitable activity in the community.  Washington Masonic Charities (WAMC) accomplishes this is by acting in the capacity of a fiscal sponsor for Lodges and projects. Examples of fiscal sponsorship include receiving and holding donations for programs, such as Bikes for Books.
 
Fiscal sponsorship is a mechanism whereby WAMC, as a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit corporation may provide a variety of services and supports to a sponsored project without requiring that the group, such as a Lodge, start a separate 501  (c) 3.
 
To assure that WAMC is in compliance with IRS rules and regulations, WAMC requires that any entity wishing to work through WAMC enter into a fiscal sponsorship agreement.
 
Examples of services provided through a fiscal sponsorship agreement include:
  • Finance and Accounting.
    • Receiving and managing Project Funds and provide accounting services for the project.
    •  Maintaining project funds in a bank account.
    •  Providing accounting reports to the sponsored organization.   
    • Making sure project funds and assets are properly managed and included in the WA Masonic Charities annual audit process.
    •  Securely maintain hard and/or electronic copies of official financial records.
    • Send all required acknowledgments to donors of tax-deductible contributions and submit all required grant reports.
  • Resource Development
    • Review project solicitations.
    • Maintain database and donor records for donors to the Project.
    • Issue acknowledgement letters for the donors to the Project.
  • Additional Services - Additional services may be provided by agreement.
Fiscal sponsorship agreements typically require the sponsored organization to adhere to certain rules and requirements related to the purpose of the funds, as well as solicitation and the use of the charity organization's good name.  In addition, fiscal sponsorship with WAMC will involve an administrative fee to cover the costs related to management & reporting, banking, and audit, plus any out of pocket expenses related to the project.
 
For more information on fiscal sponsorship, go to the National Network of Fiscal Sponsors web site at http://www.fiscalsponsors.org/pages/about-fiscal-sponsorship.
 
Lodges that currently have funds held by WAMC will be asked to complete Fiscal Sponsorship agreements prior to April 15 th to help WAMC assure that it is compliant. 


Click here for a sample financial sponsorship agreement: http://www.wa-masoniccharities.org/documents/WAMC%20FSA%20Sample.pdf


LibraryMuseum
Library & Museum Update
Harold Hobbs discussing new items in the collection
-by Harold Hobbs
A portion of the mission statement of the Washington Masonic Charities group is to: "Preserve and share the Masonic heritage of Washington State".  

This is accomplished in two ways; a museum which holds a large collection Masonic artifacts in our museum; and an extensive library with a large selection of books of Masonic interest. These are available not only to Freemasons of Washington but also to non-masons who have an interest in a better understanding of what Freemasonry is and what it does.

Some of the areas of interest may be found in the following sections of the library and is a listing of just a few of them; Bibliography, History and Philosophy, Customs and Paraphernalia, Jurisprudence, Charity and Education, Literature and Music, Women in Freemasonry and Research Lodges.

In the Research Lodge section there are 43 different research groups represented, not only from the United States but from all over the world. One collection in particular may be of interest to a researcher. It is the transactions from the Quatuor Coronati Research Lodge No. 2076. It is the oldest Research Lodge in the world founded in 1884 but not consecrated until 1886 under the jurisdiction of the United Grand Lodge of England. 

It accepts members from all over the world through its Correspondence Circle. A book of transactions called Ars Quatuor Coronatorum (which includes the papers given in the lodge) has been published every year since 1886. Our library is fortunate in that we have a complete collection of transactions since the first issue.

The lodge was formed by nine brethren who insisted on using an evidence-based approach to the study of Masonic history and research to the origins of Freemasonry. Their approach was new and unusual, and they intended that the results should "replace the more imaginative writings of earlier authors of that period on the history of Freemasonry." We can thank these brethren for changing the method of study of Freemasonry and began what is now called the "authentic school" of Masonic research.

The Washington Masonic Library and Museum is located in the building of the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of Washington; 4970 Bridgeport Way W., University Place, WA 98467. Operating hours are Monday - Wednesday, 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. Requests may be made for other days. Power for computers and wifi is available.

You can visit the Washington Masonic Library & Museum online by going to the following link: 
Planned_Giving_Update
Leave a Legacy

For generations, Freemasons have generously shared with others.  We are called to be charitable.  What better way to leave a legacy than to consider an estate or planned gift.  We feel strongly that anyone who leaves an estate gift to WA Masonic Charities should have the expectation that those dollars will continue to good well into the future, which is why our focus is on creating endowments to support older adults, our young people, and to preserve the Masonic heritage of Washington.  

If you are thinking about leaving a legacy to a charitable organization or would like more information, WA Masonic Charities can help you to learn where to find estate planning attorneys and financial planners who can help.  If you are considering leaving a gift to WA Masonic Charities, please let us know!

Call or email Ken Gibson at (844) 288-3531 X 403 or ken@wa-masoniccharities.org
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Donate
Charity - Our M ost Important Virtue



If you would like to support WA Masonic Charities you may also send a check to:
Washington Masonic Charities
PO Box 65830
University Place, WA 98464
Attn: Ken Gibson
 

| Washington Masonic Charities| (844) 288-3531 |  info@wa-masoniccharities.org | http://www.wa-masoniccharities.org
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