Ben at the Linden Clinic
No more trouble at the mill
Can we help?|
Included within this edition of MQ is a small
leaflet advertising the work of the New
Masonic Samaritan Fund (NMSF). It
includes a small plastic card which provides
both the contact details of the Fund and
a brief outline of the support it provides.
Please detach the card from the leaflet and
keep it in a safe place.
Ideally, keep it with you at all times just
in case you, or someone you know, needs
to contact the Fund. Above all, please
remember that help and confidential advice
are just a phone call away.
Look what I can do!
Ben Huntsman is nearly four years old and
was born with facial paralysis down the right
side of his face. He was unable to close his
right eye or move any muscles at all. His
face looked “droopy” and he couldn’t even
smile. After a long series of tests at his local
hospital, Ben’s parents were told that
nothing could be done.
Faced with a 12-month wait for a second
opinion the family took matters into their
own hands with extensive research via the
internet. This identified a possible course
of treatment at the Linden Clinic, Cheshire.
The treatment involves attaching electrodes
to Ben’s face every night for three hours.
Electrical impulses stimulate the nerves and
encourage movement. This has to be done
while Ben is asleep and his parents stay with
him to check the electrodes remain in place.
Having started the treatment privately,
and in the absence of any funding from their
local health authority, the family faced the
prospect of having to abandon the process as
they could not afford the ongoing expense.
Fortunately, a chance conversation with the
Almoner of Searton Valley Lodge No. 6239
led to an approach being made to the NMSF
who made a grant to the family. As a result,
Ben now has his own machine at home
enabling him to gain maximum benefit.
The biggest highlight for Ben’s parents
was to be awoken one morning by the
excited shouts of “Look what I can do!”
as Ben was able to close his right eye. At
his most recent visit to the Linden Clinic,
Ben was shown to have ten times the
nerve/muscle activity in the right side
of his face compared to his previous visit.
No more trouble at mill!
In December 2005, the NMSF paid for
hip replacement surgery for Ray Horton.
Following many months of extreme pain
and discomfort, Ray was able to undergo
surgery at the Horder Centre five months
before his anticipated NHS date.
He has now tested the success of the
surgery by, amongst other things, climbing
to the top of Blackpool Tower and the 137
steps to the light at St Mary’s lighthouse in
Not content with these achievements
Ray is now back at work as part of the
volunteer maintenance team at the White
Windmill, Sandwich and proudly able to
carry his own tools. In his own words Ray
says “my left hip is now as good as it ever
was, I do not even think about having had
If you know someone who is waiting
for medical treatment via the NHS, and
cannot afford private care, please contact
the NMSF on 020 7404 1550.