In March 1955, a group of 20 women and 4 members of the Rotorua Hospital Board got together to discuss forming a Hospital Auxiliary. During the first meeting, the group discussed a range of ways they could help the hospital and the patients under its care. From that day on, they began meeting monthly to discuss new ways to lend a hand.
As the years went by, the Auxiliary provided an array of services to the hospital, including maintaining a well-stocked library, visiting children’s wards, transporting patients’ visitors, decorating wards for special occasions, providing treats for young patients, and much more. They even went as far as knitting, crocheting, and sewing bed jackets, knee rugs, teddy bears, and other handmade items for the patients.
Although the services have evolved over time, the Auxiliary still knits, crochets, and sews. With the assistance of funding from the Rotorua Trust, the Auxiliary supplies wool for their knitters, and they are able to provide the hospital with handmade garments such as knee rugs, bed jackets, teddy bears, and other items as requested. The need for finance to purchase yarn is imperative to be able to supply their knitters. While they receive wool and yarn donations from time to time, without a steady supply, which they purchase each month, they wouldn’t be able to continue their work.
The Auxiliary says they take inspiration from Helen Keller’s quote, “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much more.”