The Daisy Turner Kiosk has been an iconic landmark at Kempsey District Hospital for more than half a century, but from 30 June the little glass rotunda will have a new role.
The United Hospital Auxiliary volunteers have decided to change the focus of the kiosk from serving coffee and cakes to being a meeting place for the group’s members.
From the end of June, the building, which bears the name of the volunteers’ past branch president, Daisy Turner, will become home to the UHA’s monthly branch meetings and craft sessions.
President Aileen Lewthwaite said the kiosk had experienced a significant drop in visitors in recent years with fewer people using the River Street entrance to the hospital.
“We really didn’t want to lose our beloved building so it will now be used for branch meetings on the third Friday of each month.”
Ms Lewthwaite said the volunteers would continue to raise funds for hospital equipment, but focus their energies on creating craft items for sale at their Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Christmas stalls.
“I really would love to know how much money this kiosk has raised for the hospital since it opened in 1964. It would have to be more than a million dollars in today’s currency,” Ms Lewthwaite said.
“The good news is that it will continue to contribute to the wellbeing of Kempsey’s hospital patients, and hopefully we can continue to attract new members who want to help us create handcrafted items to sell at our hospital stalls.
“We also hope our membership will grow. Volunteering is a great way to make new friends and spend time with old friends. In fact, I’d say that while fundraising for the hospital has been our focus, the unexpected bonus has been the strong friendships that have been forged over the years.
“We are very fortunate to have such a wonderful group of volunteers who have been supported in their fundraising efforts by a very generous business community and local residents. The staff at the hospital are also fantastic – always supportive and always appreciative of what we do.”
A morning tea for past and present UHA members and Pink Ladies will be held at 10am on 30 June to celebrate the contribution the Daisy Turner Kiosk has made to Kempsey District Hospital over its 53-year history.