Masons turn up the heat

Alan Read with Waipā Masonic Lodge 119 member Bruce Brisco, and Alpha Lodge 81 member, Celso Baldo, at last Saturday’s wood-chopping working bee in Ōhaupō.

Members from two regional Freemason lodges spent time recently processing and shifting loads of firewood they intend selling in support of the Casting for Recovery (CfR) programme.

Cambridge’s Alpha Lodge 81, and the Te Awamutu-based Waipā Masonic Lodge 119 are working in conjunction for the first time in the ‘firewood for charity’ initiative.  Once one of their number sourced an ideal wood source in Ōhaupō, the lodges joined forces to chop, move and market the wood to support the CfR programme.

Now well-established in New Zealand, Casting for Recovery originated in the United States with the aim of enhancing the quality of life for women with breast cancer.  It does that by offering free retreats that combine peer support with the therapeutic sport of fly fishing. Women all over the country attend weekend retreats where they are pampered with massages, offered make-up advice and more, and are taught fly-fishing by some of the country’s finest anglers.

In early February, a donation of $4300, raised through the Freemasons and Waipā Masonic Lodge 119, was presented to members of the Casting for Recovery team who organise the annual retreats at Wharepapa, south of Te Awamutu.

Alan Read, Worshipful Master of Cambridge’s Alpha Lodge 81, said they were hoping the sales of the firewood, which is all gum, will raise around $5000 for Casting for Recovery.

“We have already sold some locally but hope we can reach our target through selling it all,” he said. “Anyone wanting a load can call me on 027 297 5058 [after hours] to make an arrangement.  We’re selling it at $100 a cube, which is a good price, and we can deliver if required.”

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