© Newtownards District No.4


Each year our District nominates a chosen charity to raise funds for. This involves all of our lodges combining to support the charity by making donations at meetings, taking up collections at events and organising special fundraisers.

Past charities to have received our support have included Asha Kiran School in India, Help for Heroes, the Children’s Hospice, Alzheimer's UK, Brainwaves and Cancer Research. During 2015 we raised the sum of £2000 for Mitchell House School, and in 2016 Cancer Focus NI were the recipients of £1500.

For 2019 and 2020, the District is supporting the Drew Nelson Life & Legacy Project. With the aim of raising £1 million over three years, the legacy project is named for the past Grand Secretary of the Grand Orange Lodge, to permanently recognise the contribution of one of its most high-profile members, whilst benefiting the next generation of community leaders.

The Institution intends to majorly expand its current student provision in the university area of Belfast, with the ultimate aim of creating a standalone ‘Drew Nelson Centre’ providing meeting space and accommodation for student members. It is also envisaged a designated development officer will provide career advice and guidance to young people across Northern Ireland and the border counties.

Mr Nelson, 60, died in 2016 after a short battle with cancer. The Dromore solicitor served as Grand Secretary of the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland for 12 years, first elected in December 2004.

Regarded as a hugely influential figure within the Order and the genesis of its numerous community development activities, Mr Nelson was also a huge advocate for younger members; establishing a third-level leadership course, as well as actively supporting the respective Orange societies at local universities.