After an extended closure of 27 months due to the pandemic, the Dr. F.H. Wigmore Hospital Gift Shop re-opened this past July and is now in full swing gearing up for the Christmas season.
This little niche gift shop is bursting with treasures that can be appreciated by all, from homemade items to home décor, gift items and clothing, to much more.
Leona Shepherd was one of the first volunteers to work in the gift shop, and after 34 years she still enjoys it and heads up a team of 15 to 20 volunteers. The volunteers work a couple days a week.
“I don’t get paid to do what I do at all,” she said.
Over time, the gift shop has been able to raise $2 million for the hospital to buy medical equipment.
Shepherd says, “It’s a great benefit to the patients.”
At Christmas time, the gift shop gives away little gift bags containing health products, toothpaste and toothbrushes to their patients. They also give stuffed animals to babies and children.
“(Having a gift shop in the hospital) is a convenience for people,” stated Shepherd, and it lifts the spirits of the patients. People can spend lots of time browsing in it and sometimes family members even call into the staff to order flowers over the phone.
Shepherd says she relies on people wanting to volunteer to help run the shop.
Although they are not running the shop on weekends yet, she says she enjoys working as a volunteer.
She also says she wants to motivate young people to become volunteers in the gift shop. She wants the young generation to be aware of how to handle money, how to use the debit machine and handle credit cards with caution.
Shepherd also thinks that volunteering is a great way to build communication skills and learn new ways to talk with people and how to greet people when they come into the store. She always encourages them to be appreciative of all people.
The gift shop is just inside the front doors of the Dr. F.H. Wigmore Hospital located at 55 Diefenbaker Drive in Moose Jaw or for more information you can call 306-694-0355.