History

Auxiliary to Cowichan District Hospital 1932 to 2013

81 years of dedicated service

  

In 1887 Mrs. Fred Maitland-Dougal moved to Cowichan and organized the first Women’s Society as part of the International Order of the King’s Daughters . The local group was called “The Scattered Circle”.  This group raised sufficient funds to make plans for a much needed Convalescent Home.

After Mrs. Maitland-Dougal’s death in 1904, the community identified a greater need for a Hospital. The Scattered Circle with local funding and government grants laid the corner stone of the King’s Daughter’s Hospital in 1910. It formally opened in 1911. By 1931 the King’s Daughter’s Hospital had grown to 60 beds and fully equipped was worth $60,000.00. The Order of the the King's Daughters turned over the Hospital to a Community Board of Directors and thus the Cowichan District Association was formed.

In 1932 Mrs. John Gigg along with several other volunteers, gathered together to try to address the growing volunteer needs of the hospital. Their first concern was the comfort of patients, followed by such necessary assistance as mending, sewing, and providing new linen for the Hospital . On April 25, 1932 the first official meeting of the ‘Women’s Auxiliary to the Cowichan District Hospital” was held.

A Junior Auxiliary came into existence in 1952 holding evening meetings, at the request of  the members with small children or daytime jobs. In 2001 the Junior Auxiliary disbanded and the members had the option of joining the Senior Auxiliary. At this time the new name was formally adopted: The Auxiliary to the Cowichan District Hospital. 

Today the Auxiliary to the Cowichan District Hospital has over 180 members and continues to offer services and raise funds for the care and comfort of patients in the Hospital and residents of Cairnsmore Place. (Formerly the site of the King’s Daughter Hospital.)  

This article appeared in the Cowichan News Leader on April 12, 2012.