Haliburton Hospital Auxiliary volunteer Debra Dart packs up a mug at the gift shop at the Haliburton hospital on Thursday Aug. 31 2017. The gift shop is the place to go to find raffle tickets dinner tickets and make donations to the auxiliary. /JENN WATT Staff

Hospital auxiliary has banner year

By Jenn Watt

Published Sept. 12 2017

Fundraising went especially well this year for the Haliburton Hospital Auxiliary with about $70000 coming in for several important projects.
Donations went to creating the compassionate care room at Highland Wood long-term care unit; creating an accessible washroom in the emergency department and refurbishing the current washroom; and replacing the complete blood count analyzer.
“All in all by the end of the time when we pay the bills it should be close to $70000 [for the 2016-2017 fiscal year]” said auxiliary president Jacqui Clarkson.

That amount was much more than is expected in a year and this coming season the auxiliary will continue with its usual fundraising amount of $40000.
“This year it’s going to be equipment both medical and non-medical that’s needed in the hospital” she said but was not yet able to give the final list of items.
The compassionate care room had a price of about $25000 she said which included outfitting a space at the nursing home with more comfortable furniture and appliances to allow friends and family of the resident using the room to spend time there.

A sleeping chair was purchased for visitors along with a small fridge and microwave a bathroom cabinet TV and table mount call-bell system kitchen cabinet with some dishes lamp with dimmer night-light and other items.
The auxiliary also spent some of the money on a blanket warmer for use at Highland Wood.
In the emergency department about $18000 was spent on washrooms.
One of the facilities is having updated plumbing installed while the other is being created with accessibility in mind.
The complete blood count or CBC analyzer is replacing older equipment. A CBC analyzer is used to screen for various blood-related issues and is used at the Haliburton hospital several times a day Clarkson said.
To pay for all of the purchases fundraising is constantly being undertaken. The popular international dinner (formerly the Italian dinner) planned for Oct. 21 is nearly sold out with about a dozen tickets left as of press time. Tickets are available at the gift shop in Haliburton or by calling Clarkson at 705-754-9851.

The auxiliary also sells tickets for its wheelbarrow of wine raffle and quilt raffle through the gift shop. Its annual open house will be Dec. 3 this year with the big bake sale and draw for the wheelbarrow of wine.
“We also have our ornaments” said Clarkson who suggested this is likely the last year members will be making and selling the Christmas treasures. “They’re available through us or the gift shop.”
The ornaments are little angels made of wood and handpainted with unique expressions.
New auxiliary members are always warmly welcomed by the organization. You can either get in touch with Clarkson or Brigitte Gebauer who is the volunteer co-ordinator for Community Support Services. You can also attend their meetings the first Wednesday of the month at 1 p.m. at the Ruth Parkes Room at the Haliburton hospital.

Since its inception in 1971 the Haliburton Hospital Auxiliary has raised $1.3 million for health-care services.
“When you consider we’re a little town in the woods that’s not too bad” said Clarkson. “Our volunteers are fabulous.”