Volunteers:: Lutheran Auxiliary

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UnityPoint Health - Des Moines

Iowa Lutheran Auxiliary

The Iowa Lutheran Auxiliary is a member-based program with the mission to support services and activities benefiting patients, the community and Iowa Lutheran Hospital.

In 1910, four years before Iowa Lutheran Hospital opened its doors, women from the First Lutheran Church in Des Moines founded the Iowa Lutheran Auxiliary to raise funds for its establishment. When the hospital was built in 1914, Auxiliary members became involved by cutting and stitching hospital supplies, including polio packs in the years when they were so desperately needed. Later, a sewing committee was created to provide the hospital with blankets, smocks and aprons.

In the 1950s, Auxiliary members began providing their first direct service function of delivering flowers to patients. The Auxiliary's list of services continued to grow, including the addition of the admitting escort service, the gift shop, a telecare program to provide contact for individuals living alone and the candy striper program for area teenagers. The Candy Striper program was later renamed the Volunteen program, and through the Auxiliary's support, the program has continued to grow. Last year, over 80 local youth dedicated their time and talents to helping staff members, patients and families of Iowa Lutheran.

In 1975, the Auxiliary further expanded their services and opened a thrift shop, which is now named the Not New Shop. Connected to George Washington Carver Community School and the Boys and Girls Club, the Not New Shop offers a wide-variety of items ranging from household goods to jewelry and clothing.

In addition to raising over $3,390,000 throughout the years, the Auxiliary continues to touch almost every area of the hospital. Now nearly 500 members strong, the Iowa Lutheran Hospital Auxiliary proudly holds the honor of being the oldest hospital auxiliary in the city.  To learn more about the Auxiliary, or to receive a complimentary issue of the Auxiliary Volunteer (Aux-Vol) newsletter, please call 515-263-5227.

Education Endowment

In an effort to help support Iowa Lutheran Hospital employees to further their education and career aspirations, the Auxiliary has awarded 146 scholarships totaling over $95,000.

Not New Shop

Bringing in a net sum of nearly $100,000 last year, the Auxiliary's thrift store, Not New Shop, located across the street from the hospital, generates community interest while raising money for projects.

Sewing Committee

For babies born at Iowa Lutheran Hospital, the Auxiliary has a volunteer sewing committee who make bibs as gifts to the newborns and their mothers.