Towards the end of 2019 we discovered that our current radio system would no longer be supported so we began our mission to find a new one. After pulling together a working group of volunteers we started looking at new options. We decided upon the Wave Radio, the Motorola TLK-100i, as it best fit our requirements for dispatching, tracking and two way communications.
We placed the order and were set for delivery just as the global pandemic hit meaning all future fundraising events ground to a halt. As we had no choice but to change radio systems we knew the cost would have a significant impact going forward with limited funds coming in. It was such a relief and much to our surprise when we heard from the Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons that the Mark Benevolent Fund would donate the full cost of our new communication system of £23,541. This meant we could save the funds we had reserved for the new radios for keeping our fleet on the road.
Last weekend we saw the first live on shift use of the new radios and heard nothing but glowing reports from the volunteers who have used them so far. It’s a comfort to know that we have fully working comms during a time we find ourselves busier than ever. We honestly can’t thank the Mark Benevolent Fund enough for their continued support of the Blood Bikes and coming through for our charity at this difficult time.
Darren W. Coleman-Heald, Charities Manager, Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons said: “The Mark Benevolent Fund and the Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons are delighted to be able to continue the relationship with our Blood Bike 'Family' albeit in these difficult and uncertain times. The service provided by them is second to none - always going the extra mile - literally.
The support provided to Blood Bike organisations by the Mark Benevolent Fund has enabled each of them to achieve their goals more quickly than might otherwise have been the case.
The partnership we have forged with Northumbria Blood Bikes will endure, underlining the Mark Benevolent Fund’s commitment to practice charity in its broadest sense. Our members will be delighted and comforted to know that their donations are being used wisely.”