The Women's Auxiliary (WA) of the Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care was established in 1955 as a fundraising arm of the Baycrest Centre as well as a provider of services to the residents and patients. It represented the amalgamation of the two women’s auxiliaries that had previously operated at the Jewish Old Folks’ Home (Baycrest’s predecessor) – The Ladies Executive and the Young Ladies Auxiliary. Dora Till served as the founding President and was succeeded by Lillian Soles in 1959.
The WA’s initial activities included running the volunteer service, the Beauty Salon, the Tuck Shop, religious and festival programming, communicating information about Baycrest to the community, and managing the memorial books and card services. These activities soon expanded to include recreational programming for residents, such as outings, an annual fashion show, and Mazel Tov nights, running Baycrest’s Day Care program, and managing the library, Gift Shop, and Snack Bar. Originally, the WA raised funds through membership fees, the sale of happiness and condolence cards, and memorial inscriptions. In 1959 the WA began organizing an annual Theatre Night fundraising event, which was supplanted by an annual Auxilorama in 1968. During the 1960s members of the WA served in Baycrest’s Women’s Corp to help raise money for the Building Expansion Fund. In 1971, the WA established a junior auxiliary called the Capricorn Group.
Today the WA continues to run many of its programs and services and to fundraise through annual events and campaigns such as, a Gala evening, a spring sale (or Bargain Bonanza), Games Girls Play (an evening of board games and arts and crafts activities), and a Women of Baycrest campaign (to support research into women’s brain health and aging). In 2000, the Women’s Auxiliary Winter Garden opened in the Apotex Centre, which was sponsored by the WA.
Scope and Content
Series consists of records documenting the formation, governance, and activities of the Women's Auxiliary of Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care. Included are meeting notices, agendas, and minutes, reports, speeches, correspondence, lists, invitations, financial records, theatrical scripts, a scrapbook, photographs, newspaper clippings, programmes, brochures, booklets, a survey, statistics, flyers, a certificate, memos, newsletters, questionnaires, and coins.
Series is arranged into the following sub-series: 1. Board of Directors and Executive Committee; 2. Annual meetings; 3. Committees and meetings; 4. Capricorn Group; 4. Festival Committee; 5. Programs and services; 6. Volunteer program; 7. Fundraising; 8. Membership; 9. Publications and publicity; 10. Finance; 11. Administrative functions; and, 12. Events. Records are described to the file level with some item level description.
Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care. Women's Auxiliary
For additional records related to the Women's Auxiliary, see the Dora Till fonds 52, series 2.