Created in April 1992 the Borders Youth Support Scheme was set up to assist, in some small way, the young people from the Scottish Borders, whether as part of a team, a group, or working for an individual achievement.
A committee was set up by the Provincial Grand Lodge of Roxburgh, Peebles and Selkirk Shires to operate the scheme and manage the funds raised by the earlier events. They considered the first of a number of applications for financial assistance, which have since included requests from such diverse sources as a group of Cadets wishing to partake in a British Forces Route March in Holland, local Football Clubs looking for strips or assistance with training equipment, Scouts to purchase equipment, a Boxing Club, Girl Guides, a talented young musician, a handicapped swimmer to take his place in a National finals event, a local Town Band for uniforms, and an Accordion Band— the list is growing still.
Grants have been made to practically everyone who has applied, provided that the money will go to help those in the 11 to 18 age group. Exceptions have occasionally been made in the age category if the funds were used as part of a project which would be of benefit the entire community.
No strings are attached to applications, and every penny raised is disbursed in grants, as there are no charges or overheads deducted from the funds. Provincial Grand Lodge has taken great pleasure from quietly having made a positive contribution to the quality of life of some of the young people of the Borders.
We have no objection if the organisations or individuals who have benefited wish to make known that we have assisted them, but there is no pressure on any beneficiary to publicise the fact. Up to November 2019 we have disbursed funds of well over £50, 000 since the scheme began and continue to make awards at the rate of around £2,000 each year.
Anyone wishing to apply for assistance only need approach any Lodge Member and ask for an Application Form, which they can get from the Provincial Grand Secretary through their Right Worshipful Master, fill it in and return it.
The committee will then consider each application on its merits and award a grant as appropriate; it’s as simple as that.