All across the state, Lodges are finding innovative new ways to take advantage of the new KMF Charities/Matching Funds Program. As long as whatever cause a given Lodge supports has a clear charitable component, that Lodge can qualify for up to $1,000 in matching funds from KMF, allowing the Lodge to have a greater impact in their community for half the money.
Among the numerous successful applications already submitted from across the state are some that may, while definitely worthwhile and sound causes, sound somewhat familiar, such as Masonic support for a food bank, a Relay for Life, and a Kans for Kids drive to fight cancer. Other relevant causes might strike us as a little more unusual, such as KSCOPS, which provides programs and services for the surviving family members and affected co-workers of police officers killed in the line of duty; a Trunk or Treat event that will not only provide treats for the kids, but also provide free hot dogs for everybody in attendance and feature the giveaway of four bike; Veterans Honor Flights, which carry veterans to Washington D.C. to see the monuments there that were built in their honor; and an Emergency Services Showcase, which sprang from the dream of a six year-old girl who heard of a child dying in a fire, and believed that tragedy may have happened because the unfortunate child in question had been scared by the sight of firefighters dressed in full gear (and hidden from them, as a result).
This unique insight inspired this special showcase to teach children (and anyone else in need of the reminder) not to fear firefighters and other first responders. All of these causes, and others like them, are exemplary ones, whether novel sounding or not, and the important thing to take away from these examples is not, of course, that they are somehow magic and that other Lodges should only consider doing the same things (though if Lodges decide to do one or more things similar to those listed above, that is certainly fine). They are recorded here in the hope that other imaginations will be fired by these ideas, so if they ultimately inspire Lodges to do something else, instead, that looks like it will work even better for them in their particular communities that’s every bit as good.