Volunteer-run gift shops offer handmade, one-of-a-kind items

The Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary raises money for health care-related projects by selling unique items at its two gift shops.

Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary volunteer Jytte Larson shows off some of the items offered at the auxiliary’s gift shop at the Ladysmith Community Health Care Centre. The auxiliary also operates a gift shop at the Lodge on 4th.

Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary volunteer Jytte Larson shows off some of the items offered at the auxiliary’s gift shop at the Ladysmith Community Health Care Centre. The auxiliary also operates a gift shop at the Lodge on 4th.

Looking for something unique to celebrate a new arrival, a birthday or any other special occasion?

The Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary is encouraging people to look no further than its two gift shops on Fourth Avenue.

Volunteer auxiliary members operate two gift shops in Ladysmith — one at the Ladysmith Community Health Care Centre and one at the Lodge on 4th.

A variety of new gift items are stocked for sale, and many of the items found at the Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary Gift Shop are handmade by local residents, including knitted one-of-a-kind items and woodworking.

“People will come in and knit things like slippers, blankets, lots of baby things,” said Claire Chisholm, assistant manager with the auxiliary’s gift shops. “A lot of people really like those things because they are very unique and something you can’t find somewhere else.”

The auxiliary is always looking for people who are interested in knitting items for the gift shops and can provide the yarn.

One hundred per cent of the net proceeds of sales in the two gift shops are directed to health care-related projects sponsored by the auxiliary.

Chisholm says the unique thing about the Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary’s gift shops is the handmade items that are available.

“You can see the little baby clothes, and you can see they’re made with quality, and they’re made with care,” she said. “It’s a good place to go if you are looking for little gifts.”

Everyone who works at the gift shops is a volunteer, so all the profits from the two shops go toward the health care centre in Ladysmith.

The gift shop at the Lodge on 4th is a bit smaller, and Chisholm says it is mainly meant to give Lodge residents and their visitors a place to shop.

“A lot of people at the Lodge like it because it’s their social interaction,” she said. “We really like it because we can be there for them, and it’s more than just giving a donation to the Lodge.”

The Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary has roughly 200 volunteers, and they are always looking for new volunteers. If anyone is interested in volunteering, they can pick up an application form at the gift shop or visit the website for information.

Chisholm started volunteering with the auxiliary because her mother is a member, and she started helping with the gift shop in January.

“I really liked the idea of helping with something that goes directly back to Ladysmith,” she said. “Everyone here is really nice.”

“It’s really interesting when you see what people can make,” she added. “I think it’s a great place to get baby gifts because they have all these handmade items.”

The Health Care Centre gift shop is open Monday through Friday from 1-4 p.m., while the Lodge on 4th gift shop is open Tuesday and Thursday from 1-4 p.m.

For more information about the Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary and to find out about specials and coupons, click here.