ACHA to hold jewelry sale

Published 6:30 am Monday, April 4, 2005

By by Lee Weyhrich
All that glitters is not gold, but for $5 it would be hard to complain.
The Atmore Community Hospital Auxiliary is holding its annual spring jewelry sale April 14 through 16 with all proceeds going toward necessities at the hospital and all items selling for $5.
"We've been having the (jewelry) sales for about six years now and we try to have them twice a year, in the spring and fall," ACH Auxiliary chairman Annette Dawe said. "All the money we make for the jewelry sale goes back into the hospital and we also do two $1,000 scholarships."
Besides raising money for the hospital the Auxiliary takes a personal interest in the hospital on a daily basis.
"We run the gift shop at the hospital and we have hall hostesses, who go to the waiting rooms and the patients' rooms to give out refreshments," Dawe said. "We answer the phone four days a week at the information desk. That saves them having to pay someone to do that for four days."
Each year the ACHA tries to get things that the hospital really needs.
"We get wish lists from each department head at the hospital and we try to get them the things that they need," Dawe said. "We also recently remodeled and refurbished the ICU (Intensive Care Unit) waiting room."
The Auxiliary has also bought meat slicers and can openers for the kitchen and has even given the money directly to the hospital before.
"About four years ago we gave $17,000 to the hospital to go to things on the wish list," Dawe said. "We just gave the money to the hospital."
Dawe already knows of one project her group would like to perform for the hospital.
"We want to redo the outpatient waiting room and the entrance there," Dawe said. "We would like to focus on doing that. It's a big job, a lot of money, but I'm hoping we can raise the money to fix that there."
Though the group does bake sales and other small fundraisers throughout the year the jewelry sales are their biggest fundraisers. The club has run into problems in the past, however.
"This company that comes has to buy a $1,000 transient permit, they have one other town that they have to pay for a $28 permit, but Atmore is the most expensive," Dawe said. "This caused a real problem last year. That really hurt us. They have to buy three different permits in Atmore and it comes to $1,080."
Dawe said the large permit fees almost ended the jewelry sales.
"We want to do things for our hospital and help it grow," Dawe said. "We get 20 percent of the sales and our volunteer auxiliary works at the sale to help bag stuff and help put things out as it is needed."
Although the sale is consistently a big earner some years are better than others.
"They sold somewhere at $50,000 worth about three years ago in the two and a half days they were here," she said. "The fall sale is usually our biggest. In November, our profit was about $5,600."
Twenty percent of that went to the Auxiliary.
The profits from the two annual sales bring in $9,000 to $10,000 a year for the Auxiliary. None of the money goes to the club members, for them the ACH is a labor of love.
"I feel blessed personally and I want to do something for someone else that will lighten their load or bring a smile to someone's face," Dawe said. "We just enjoy helping others."
The annual spring $5 jewelry sale will be from April 14 through 16. Sale hours are 7 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Thursday and Friday and 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday.

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