The Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution
“The RMBI seeks to offer high quality care, support and assistance to older Freemasons and their dependants. It is committed to ensuring the right of every individual to dignity, respect, choice and control over their own life is upheld and maintained”.
The RMBI has been caring for older Freemasons and their dependants since 1842 – well over 160 years. As an organisation the RMBI offers degrees of care, support and assistance appropriate to the individual’s needs. The care provided by the RMBI is exclusively for brethren, wives, widows and other dependants who meet eligibility criteria. Advice is also provided for those in difficulty but who wish to remain in their own homes.
The RMBI accommodates over 1000 residents in 17 Care Homes around the country. In addition, a number of other people living in the community receive pastoral care visits from the ‘Care Advice Team’. Over 3000 people benefit from the services of the RMBI and over 2000 of these are women.
A limited number of two week holidays are also made available to Annuitants and recipients of the Masonic Relief Grant each year at four selected UK sites (Bournemouth, Eastbourne, Llandudno and Thorpe Bay). A winter holiday in Malta is also available for those who need to escape from the cold and damp.
The RMBI employs over 1400 staff, mainly in the Homes, many of whom work part-time.
The average age of RMBI home residents is 85. There are more than 450 residents over the age of 90 and more than 30 residents over the age of 100. This means that there are increasing challenges for caring for people with Dementia.
The RMBI also provides care for people with a mental handicap / learning disability.
There is a loan scheme available to Annuitants and recipients of Masonic Relief Grant or beneficiaries of the Freemasons’ Grand Charity to help with home improvements or renovation (repayable from estate).
Most Care Homes have an allied ‘Association of Friends’ who become involved with fundraising for local projects, providing practical assistance to the Home Managers and staff and may also befriend individual residents.
The work of the RMBI is one of mutual dependence between the RMBI and the fraternity. The RMBI exists to enhance the quality of life for over 4000 people throughout England and Wales. Increasingly there are more demands for quality and increased standards of care with more diverse needs to satisfy.
The Last Festival East Lancashire held for the RMBI was in 1960, the one before that was in 1905.
Total contribution from the RMBI to East Lancashire beneficiaries over the last 5 years has been around £420,000 which is an average of around £84,000 per annum.
In 2008 14 residents from East Lancashire received annual support of £89,000 from the RMBI: 10 in Ecclesholme, 2 in Connaught Court, York, 1 in Queen Elizabeth Court, Llandudo and 1 in Prince Edward Duke of Kent Court, Stisted.
In 2009 there are currently 12 residents from East Lancashire, currently receiving support at annual rate of £88,000 : 8 in Ecclesholme, 2 in Connaught Court, York, 1 in Queen Elizabeth Court, Llandudo and 1 in Prince Edward Duke of Kent Court, Stisted.