Thurston Family Family papers,   1823-1974, and undated
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History

Organizational History:

The Central Michigan Community Hospital (CMCH) Women’s Auxiliary had its first meeting on December 7, 1944 with 90 women from nearby communities attending. Annual fees were $2. Mrs. Leo Brandell was the first president. Initially, the main goals of the Auxiliary were to raise funds or donate supplies to CMCH and to visit patients in the then 50-bed hospital with their coffee cart. By 1983 the goals and purpose of the Auxiliary were to promote: public relations activities to bring greater community interest and understanding to the CMCH; volunteer services for the CMCH; fund raising for the CMCH; leadership and educational training of members; involvement of members; and the exchange of mutually helpful information with local and state auxiliaries. By 1991 the Auxiliary provided scholarships for health-related careers and funds for special projects. The Auxiliary established the CMCH Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and the ICU Endowment Memorial Fund, which allows the Auxiliary to make yearly contributions of up to $5,000 to the ICU. Today, in addition to the 1991 goals, Auxiliary members visit and check on patients in the now 352-bed hospital, provide escorts to visitors and families, and make daily rounds. The Auxiliary has six standing committees, three ad hoc committees, eleven hospital committees, and a newsletter, the Auxiliary Announcer.

The Auxiliary was quite creative and successful with its various fundraisers over the past 50 years. In 1946 the Auxiliary held sewing days and members donated home canned goods, clothing, and linens to CMCH. Later, bridge teas and charity balls (first held in 1945) raised funds to purchase kitchen equipment and crib supplies, while hospital gowns, baby supplies, linens, and bedding were made or donated by the Auxiliary. In the 1960s the Auxiliary began to purchase very expensive hospital equipment, such as industrial size dryers, recovery room equipment, portable x-ray machinery, and laboratory equipment, among many other items. In the 1980s-1990s, luncheons, quilting bees, the Be An Angel project, golf tournaments, Christmas teas, cookie contests, teddy bear raffles, Hi-Fever Follies and Satin Balls have allowed the Auxiliary to raise large amounts of money to benefit the community.

The Central Michigan Community Hospital (CMCH) Auxiliary is the successor to the CMCH Women’s Auxiliary. The name changed in May 2001. For information about the Auxiliary prior to May 2001 see the finding aid for that organization. In late July 2008 the Auxiliary and other volunteer units at the hospital were merged into one volunteer force and the Auxiliary ceased to exist as a separate unit. (This information is from the collection.)