In response to an urgent appeal launched by the British Red Cross, the President of The Freemasons’ Grand Charity, Richard Hone QC has today approved a £30,000 emergency grant in support of their flood relief efforts in the Balkans
In response to an urgent appeal launched by the British Red Cross, the President of The Freemasons’ Grand Charity, Richard Hone QC has approved a £30,000 emergency grant in support of their flood relief efforts in the Balkans.
Since 13th May 2014, strong winds, low temperatures and extremely heavy rains in Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) have caused large-scale flooding. So far, 44 people have been reported killed, although government officials expect this figure to increase as the water recedes.
Speaking about the donation, Richard Hone QC, President of the Grand Charity said: ‘With so many people facing hardship and danger in the Balkans, we know that Freemasons are eager to support the emergency relief efforts of the Red Cross. Hundreds of their staff and volunteers are already providing life-saving support in the region, and we hope that this donation will make a real difference to many of the people in need of assistance.’
Ben Webster, Disaster Response Manager for the British Red Cross said: ‘The Red Cross is delighted to have received such a generous donation from The Freemasons’ Grand Charity. Three million people across Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia have now been affected by the floods, which are the worst ever recorded in the region.
‘These funds are a valuable contribution towards the Red Cross response, helping us provide food, water, and shelter to some of the tens of thousands of people who have had to leave their homes and in the long term, support them to rebuild their lives and livelihoods.’
The floods have triggered more than 3,000 devastating landslides, which have buried houses and disturbed landmines laid during the regional conflict in the 1990s. More than 350,000 people in the region are estimated to be without water or electricity, and more than 100,000 homes are thought to have been destroyed. This means that hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced and urgently need hygiene kits, mattresses and blankets. The emergency grant from The Freemasons’ Grand Charity will help with the provision of thousands of these supplies.