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Singapore, may 2021

The first quarter of 2021 continues to hold challenges for many of our Masonic Lodges in Singapore. One such challenge for Lodge Singapore was to implement a worthy charity project within the lock-down like restrictions imposed on Singaporeans needed to combat the pandemic. We knew we had to be creative as we sought ways to provide relief to those in need. Further as Lodge Singapore has fourteen (14) Filipino members with several hailing from Batangas, Philippines, a port city some 95 kms from Manila there was an awareness that their community back home urgently needed surgical masks. The challenge then became how to source, ship, and ensure that the masks were distributed to the targeted communities especially when traveling was so restricted.

It was then that Brother Ivan Ng, also a member of 7178 and Singapore businessman most generously offered to donate 1,000 boxes of surgical masks to Batangas. There was no doubt that Brother Ivan not only had a charitable heart but also the experience to source and ship the masks. In 2020 demonstrating that virtue which may justly denominated the distinguishing characteristic of a Freemason’s heart, charity, he and his family donated medical grade surgical masks to the government of Milan in Italy, the epicenter of covid in Europe at the time. Isolation gowns and PPE suits were also sent to countries around Asia at the peak of Covid and was featured on this news article:

With the worsening situation in the Philippines, the Charity Committee with the backing of the Worshipful Master, Past Masters, Lodge officers and the rest the members agreed to support the Batangas charity project by paying for the shipping expenses and taxes associated with transporting the thousand (1,000) boxes of surgical mask at a cost of SGD4,150 with the Lodges funds covering SGD 2,500 and individual donates from the Brethren of SGS1,650.

Past Master, members of the Lodge and our Charity Steward coordinated with well-known Masonic Brethren in Batangas, Civil Military Operations unit (CMO) of the Philippine Air Force at Camp Basilio Fernando Airbase (AETDC) and the Officials for local community to ensure the distribution of the masks.

With close coordination of all parties within the Lodge and in those on the ground in Batangas the project was carried out successfully and the masks distributed to the targeted list of recipients of the communities. The distribution of the 1,000 boxes of masks took place at 5 separate areas as follows:

1. Barangay Kinalaglagan (Led by Master Sergeant Reynaldo Cueto PAF)

2. Sico Lipa (Riles) (Led by Major Eugenio Nepthali E. Solomon PNP)

3. Padre Garcia (Led by the Worshipful Master, W Bro Danny Mayo of Lumang Bayan Masonic Lodge No. 433 GLP)

4. Lipa City Community Pantry (Led by Major Michael Macasaet ,CMO AETDC PAF)

Some of the masks were even included on the “Community Pantry” in Lipa City, Batangas, organized by Civil Military Operation Team of the Air Education, Training and Doctrine Command (AETDC) by the Philippine Air Force (PAF) on April 25 - 26, 2021.

A "Community Pantry” is where different generous donors come together to provide some assistance to the less-privileged and needy community with food, groceries, medicines, service, or any other things that they can share during the said activity.

5. Balete Pabahay Relocation Area “Those affected by Taal Volcano Eruption”

Led by Master Sergeant Reynaldo Cueto(PAF) and Barangay Captain Basilio Harina

Do note that during the distribution, social distancing and proper health protocol was always being observed as a safety and health precaution.

Lodge Singapore is very grateful for the support of all our members, our Masonic brethren from The Philippines Grand Lodge, family members and friends who have unselfishly given their time, effort, finances, and support to this charitable endeavor.

Among those Masonic virtues practiced by the members of the Craft, “Charity” shines the brightest. Charity and relief will always be part of our Lodge Singapore make-up and take a leading role of the Lodge’s commitment in helping communities where they reside, or whence members originate, without regard to borders, politics, or religion.


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