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Tony: Visiting Volunteer

Tony, 62, is a Visiting Volunteer from the Province of Hertfordshire

My alarm goes off…

…between 7am and 8am. I was a carpenter for 45 years with early starts, so now I’ve retired it’s nice to have a bit of a lie in.

I’m responsible for…

…helping potential beneficiaries apply for support. I arrange a visit and make sure their application is as detailed as possible for the MCF to consider. If the applicant agrees, we also work alongside Almoners to make sure they’re fully supported emotionally as much as anything else.

I got my role…

…after my PGA approached me to join the team. I went through the vetting and training that is involved to become a Visiting Volunteer, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it ever since so I’m glad I applied.

My typical day…

… begins with a cup of tea in bed. I then check my emails and start making calls to arrange some visits. I jump in my car and drive to the family or individual that I’m seeing that day. I usually spend around one to two hours with them, talking them through the forms and helping to fill them in. If I feel that the family’s requirements are quite complex, I ask a member of the MCF Advice and Support Team to join me on the visit as they have a wealth of knowledge in a lot of different areas. It’s so important that the family or individual knows that our visits are fully confidential – it can take a lot of courage to ask for help so it’s our duty to respect their privacy. It’s equally important to highlight that not all applications will be successful, so although we always encourage people to apply for support, nothing is guaranteed.

My top tip…

…for any Visiting Volunteer is always carry a prepaid envelope supplied by the MCF so you can make sure the application is in the post on the same day.

My most memorable moment…

… was helping a Freemason called Ronnie to get out of homelessness. You can read his story on page 9. The hardest part of my role… …is when I visit families with children whose parent has either passed away or left the family home, as I’ve got a lot of empathy for them on a personal level.

The best part of my role…

…is when that email comes through to say that the family or individual that I visited will receive support. Moments like that remind me how proud I am to be a Visiting Volunteer. Freemasonry isn’t all about your meetings, it’s also about those who you can help.

Our Impact

Tony: Visiting Volunteer

My alarm goes off… …between 7am and 8am. I was a carpenter for 45 years with early starts, so now I’ve retired it’s nice to have a bit of a lie in. I’m responsible for… …helping potential beneficiaries apply for support. I arrange a visit and make sure their application is as detailed as possible…

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