Posted on: November 20, 2015
Even before Northside Hospital opened its doors in Atlanta on July 6, 1970, there was an organization diligently engaged in its creation. That’s the Northside Hospital-Atlanta Auxiliary, which a year earlier helped raise funds for the hospital.
This year, as Northside Hospital celebrated its 45th anniversary, the Auxiliary is a year ahead with 46 years of commitment to the hospital. On Oct. 8, Atlanta Auxiliary volunteers were honored for their service hours during a luncheon held at Villa Christina.
Two of the original members — Jean Durden, of Marietta and Rosemary Fox, of Roswell — were instrumental in bringing Northside Hospital to the community and were among the volunteers honored at the luncheon.
“I remember being so happy to have a hospital come to our community,” Fox said. “It was originally five or six of us who met in a little house.”
But the Atlanta Auxiliary has grown along with the hospital. This past year alone, Northside Atlanta Auxiliary’s active core of volunteers — more than 300 auxiliary members and 106 volunteens — gave their time and talents daily, for a total of 46,475 hours of service to patients, their families and hospital staff.
Michaelle Arkin, president of the Northside Hospital-Atlanta Auxiliary said over the years, the group’s calling has remained the same, “As is our mission to this day: ‘We strive to make Northside a better place for patients, visitors and staff.’”
At the event, the Atlanta Auxiliary also presented Northside Hospital with a check in the amount of $459,469 during the event.
“Every year we provide the hospital departments with items they request and we support the foundation with their fundraisers and events,” Arkin said.
In addition, the auxiliary provides a scholarship program that awards employees and their dependents financial assistance to further their education. Also, each spring the auxiliary funds Camp Hope, a three-day retreat for Northside’s cancer patients.
The auxiliary volunteer opportunities at Northside facilities are varied, including, customer service, patient and family support and community outreach. The volunteers support staff in the caring of babies, taking photos of newborns, working in the gift shop, delivering flowers and movies, transporting and escorting patients, visiting and cheering patients and even performing puppet shows at elementary schools.
“Not only are we providing a service, we are providing a valuable resource for the hospital,” said Carol Kratochvil, Northside Hospital volunteer services manager.
For more information, visit NorthsideAtlAux.com or call (404) 851-8707.
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