The Freemasons are encouraging its 200,000 members to roll up their sleeves and volunteer to help vaccinate the population.
To help protect all UK citizens during this difficult time, the Freemasons have also offered their lodges to administer the vital jabs and many buildings are being used as Covid-19 vaccination centres.
Two halls are being used as vaccination centres in west Kent. At the Westwood Masonic Centre in Welling, more than 2,000 people were vaccinated on 9-10 January 2021, while the Tunbridge Wells Masonic Centre opened its doors for vaccinations on 14 January.
In addition, the United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE), the governing body for Freemasonry in England and Wales, is encouraging Freemasons to donate their time and efforts to help fight the virus. It also emphasised that those volunteering should not participate if they are in an at-risk group.
The UGLE campaign is being carried out through its monthly email to members and official social media channels. The idea is to reach as members as possible, to encourage them to help immunise the population.
Dr David Staples, chief executive of the UGLE, said: “In 2018, more than 18.5 million hours of volunteer work were undertaken by Freemasons. Now that we have the vaccine in the UK, it is crucial that we help in every way we can to protect the population. If the NHS needs people, then we are happy to encourage and emphasise the importance of this to our members.
“We want to support the NHS and show our gratitude for its people’s efforts and the amazing job they have done during the pandemic. Freemasons always stand behind our core values of friendship, integrity, charity and respect – and we are proud to help so many people.”
More than ever, efforts to vaccinate those most at risk from serious illness are now paramount, and there is a need to ensure that the NHS has as many volunteers as possible. To help the NHS in the vaccination campaign, volunteers should sign up at: https://nhsvolunteerresponders.org.uk
Volunteers will then receive an email with login details to sign up online and be asked to download the GoodSAM app, which will match the person to their area.