Volunteer auxiliary raises thousands for Mission health care

The Mission Health Care Auxiliary has raised nearly $80,000 this year for the ongoing needs of the Mission Hospital, Pleasant View Care Home, and Christine Morrison Hospice.

Auxiliary volunteer Alyce Campbell said the $76,742 was all raised through the hospital gift shop and the Cottage Thrift Store on First Avenue, and represents the average annual contribution.

Some of the big ticket donations this year include a Hovermatt Mattress for over $12,000; a Spirit Bed for $5,200; a $10,000 infuser for the emergency room; an Argo Walker for the Dr. Stuart Pavilion at $6,000; a $10,000 contribution toward the new Busy Bus; two $3,160 shower chairs also for the Pavilion; and a $26,800 donation to Pleasant View.

The auxiliary has also been preparing to help residents of the Dr. Stuart Pavilion move to the Ebenezer Home in Abbotsford while a new facility is constructed. It is slated for completion in 2013.

Campbell said she enjoys the feeling she gets working with the auxiliary to help patients, whether it’s a matter of renting equipment or giving them new clothing to wear home because the ones they came to the hospital with had to be destroyed.

Although the 140 members of the auxiliary are unpaid volunteers, Campbell said health care professionals often tell her volunteers are an essential service for the community.

For instance, the Loans Cupboard program, discontinued by the Red Cross, was taken over by the auxiliary to continue providing patients with wheelchairs or walkers.

On top of raising money for medical equipment this year, the auxiliary handed out three $1,000 bursaries to Mission students who plan to study medicine.

The MHCA celebrated its 90th anniversary last year, formerly called the Mission Memorial Hospital Auxiliary until 1995.

Campbell said they are always looking for new volunteers to donate their time, which typically averages four hours every other week.