Guttenberg Hospital Auxiliary offers free memberships

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Gift shop manager and Auxiliary member Cheryl Simmons notes that GMH and CFP employees are the shop’s best customers. The Auxiliary distributes half of the profits from the gift shop to special projects that benefit the hospital and surrounding community. (Press photo by Molly Moser)

By Molly Moser

The Guttenberg Municipal Hospital Auxiliary has elected to waive the $10.00 membership fee for the remainder of 2015 in hopes of recruiting some fresh new perspective into the organization. The Auxiliary supports the hospital with fundraisers including Easter baskets, uniform sales, quilt raffles, and the annual Cookie Walk during the holiday season. 

The group’s current project is their annual Easter basket fundraiser. Baskets full of fruit, candy, and baked goods can be ordered in the hospital gift shop. Supporters can even request that baskets be delivered. The Auxiliary fills the baskets with items purchased from the hospital kitchen, further supporting their cause. Funds raised by this and the Auxiliary’s many other projects have been used toward updated medical equipment, furniture for the waiting rooms, and more.

Half of the money raised in the hospital’s gift shop, which is staffed by Auxiliary volunteers, is given to the Auxiliary twice a year for distribution toward current needs of GMH, Cornerstone Family Practice (CFP), and the patients. “We are hoping that we can increase the membership, because it all goes back to the hospital and the community,” said Cheryl Simmons, gift shop manager. 

In November, the Auxiliary was selected as Clayton Ridge’s 2014 Friend of Education for their supports of Red Ribbon Week activities and their annual scholarship program. Each year, the Auxiliary donates funds to purchase ribbons, prizes, and help pay speakers who relay important messages for helping keep kids drug-free.

In addition to its generous contributions to the hospital, the Auxiliary awards up to six $500 scholarships annually to students from Clayton County who are in their first year of education in a medical field. Most recently, scholarships were awarded to Taylor Fassbinder, who expects to graduate from the University of Iowa nursing program in May, and Brenna Heying, who will graduate in 2017 from the University of Dubuque with a BSN. Scholarship applications are accepted on a rolling basis and recipients are eligible for a second scholarship. For more information, contact scholarship chairperson Carolyn Hoffmann at 252-3321 or hoffmann@alpinecom.net.

The Auxiliary welcomes men and women of all ages. Auxiliary leaders remind readers that it is not necessary for members to volunteer in the gift shop or attend every meeting. The group meets just eight times per year, with the next meeting scheduled for Tuesday, March 24, at 1:30 p.m. in the hospital’s large conference room. “Try us on for size. Come and see what it’s like!” encourages Simmons.

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