Nurse Norma Zimmerman
In 1915, the Alumnae Association of Brantford General Hospital was organized. Those associated with original activities of the group were Misses Gertrude Best, Margaret Gillespie, Annie McCullough, and Jessie McGregor.
In 1922, the Alumnae was responsible for the 19th Convention of Graduate Nurses’ Association of Ontario, entertaining 300 delegates.
During the 1930’s and 40’s, monthly business meetings were conducted followed by entertainment.
In the 1950’s, meetings continued to be held once a month. Nurse’s memorial Services were held annually.
Members continued to assist with Graduation celebrations, and the Association continued to sponsor the Graduation Banquet and Dance annually, at which all graduates were guests.
Fund raising events included fashion shows, dances, rummage sales, teas and bake sales.
A donation of gifts was made to the Family Services Bureau.
In 1957, a scholarship was awarded to a First Year Student. This was changed to a bursary in 1958. The multiplex was purchased in 1957 for preserving Graduation pictures.
In the 1960’s, the Alumnae Banquet and Dance continues to honour Graduates. Members were ushers at the Graduation Exercises and assisted with other activities for Graduation.“Mrs. Chase”, a skeleton, a portable screen, and other items were purchased for the School.
“The Link”, a newsletter, began in 1958. Co-editors were Mrs. Jean Hurley and Mrs. Elizabeth Laycock.
A Building Fund was established for the new School of Nursing and residence. The Alumnae’s project was to furnish the Lounge.
Nurses’ Vesper Services continued annually.
Fund Raising events included the sale of Hasty Notes with a picture of the “New Hospital”.
A sterling silver rose bowl and coffee urn were given to the Alumnae by the late Mrs. D.A. Morrison, a B.G.H. Graduate of 1914. In May 1961, they were used for the first time at a tea and bake sale, sponsored by the Alumnae, held in the Q.E.P. Classrooms.
Christmas gifts were given to the children of the Cerebral Palsy Unit.
Monitary contributions were made to several service organizations.
A variety show at Brant Avenue United Church was sponsored by the Alumnae. Doctors and Nurses participated to make it a great success.
“The Building Fund” was presented to the B.G.H. for furnishing the Residence Lounge.
A piano and oil paintings of the four seasons, by Kausal, were purchased for the Residence Lounge.
The Graduation Banquet became a “Homecoming” Dinner and Dance in 1965.
The Ciba Collection of books was purchased for the School of Nursing Library in memory of Eleanor K. Gee.
Bursary assistance continued for Student Nurses.
By-laws were revised and meetings were reduced to four a year. Executive meetings were held monthly.
In the 1970’s, regular meetings have been discontinued, The Alumnae Executive continues to conduct business during the year, donates to service organizations, and subscribes to the “Reader’s Digest” for the Grads in the Mission Field. Fund raising activities are very limited.
In 1970, “The Happening” was a successful variety show, with Doctors and Nurses starring.
In 1974, the Association assisted in sponsoring a retirement reception for Miss Irene Feely.
The Annual Homecoming Banquet and Dance continues to be a favourite social event for B.G.H. Grads.
In August of 1886, the first student was enrolled in the Training School for Nurses, John H. Stratford Hospital. Each year until the 1920's up to four nurses were graduated every year. Around 1915 the Hospital and School became the Brantford General Hospital and BGH Training School for Nurses. The term "School of Nursing" evolved by 1950.
Eventually the School of Nursing became part of the Mohawk College Nursing Program with nurses continuing to train at the Brantford General Site.
The Graduating Class was presented with a subscription to the “Canadian Nurse”.
Missionaries were given subscriptions to “Reader’s Digest”. The Florence Nightingale Club, of outside Graduates, was entertained annually.
Alumnae Members were involved in many projects to aid war victims and those serving overseas. They did knitting for the Salvation Army, sent gifts to Doctors serving overseas, and donated to the Ontario Nurses War Fund, and the “Evening Telegram Fund” for London destitutes.
The Association sponsored a banquet in honour of the Graduating Class and assisted with Graduation activities.
Plays, produced by the Dramatic Association of Toronto, were sponsored by the Alumnae, two of which were called “Cadida” and “Town Tonics”.