In celebration of the BC Association of Healthcare Auxiliaries 75th Anniversary, the Province has proclaimed May 9, 2020 to be Healthcare Auxiliaries Day.
The 76 member auxiliaries provide way beyond a million hours of volunteer time and raise $10,000,000 of funds every year in support of healthcare in BC, and the Sunshine Coast auxiliary is a leading contributor to these totals. Well done everyone! It’s good to reflect on all we have achieved and all we continue to do in support of healthcare here on the Sunshine Coast.
The Sunshine Coast Healthcare Auxiliary has been active on the Coast since 1937 when the Pender Harbour Branch was formed to support the original St. Mary’s Hospital in Garden Bay. Their first major fundraising purchase was an X-ray machine for the hospital in 1941.
Times may have changed but the Auxiliary’s commitment to supporting the healthcare needs on the Coast have not. Now with 5 branches and a membership of over 400 the Auxiliary’s commitment to serve has never been stronger. Members contribute tens of thousands of volunteer hours every year operating the Loan Cupboard, supporting seniors in long-term care, providing bursaries to students, running the Thrift Store and the Gift Shop, encouraging and training volunteers and raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for important medical equipment.
We wanted to make a splash to celebrate this important milestone, but Covid-19 got in the way. So below is a photo of the happy smiling faces of Rae, Gail, Donna and Marlene who greeted the public at the Thrift Store for a prior Auxiliary Day, and another of members proudly parading in their blues. One day soon, we will all be ready to celebrate once again!
But even so, Covid-19 will not prevent us from accomplishing our mission! During these unprecedented times we have donated $100,000 to the Hospital Foundation’s COVID-19 Emergency Support Fund and $5,000 to the Sunshine Coast Food Banks. We initiated an amazing sewing project together with the Sunshine Coast Quilters Guild. We sewed 220 OR scrub hats, 314 scrub bags and 306 masks for staff at Sechelt (Shishalh) Hospital and Shorncliffe, Totem, and Second Floor South, for a total of 878 items, all completed within 3 weeks! And we continue to donate to the hospital for medical equipment as needed.
Apart we are still together!