“I’ve always thought we are so fortunate to have such an amazing
facility in such a small town. It’s unique in today’s world,
and this is what I can do to support Kirby.”
Bill Haworth is a busy man. Not only has he worked as a full-time flight
attendant for the past 30 years, he is an active Kirby volunteer and Auxiliary
member, and he ran a jewelry store in downtown Monticello until just last year.
Bill’s work with the Auxiliary started with the jewelry store. “Every
October, we designed bracelets and jewelry to raise money for breast cancer,”
he explains. “One hundred percent of the purchase price went to Kirby.
“When we did the bracelets, they made me an honorary Auxiliary member,
and then somewhere along the way I became an official member!”
Part of Bill’s “official” Auxiliary member volunteer
work includes spreading joy during the holidays. In between working transoceanic
flights, Bill takes time to set up Kirby’s Christmas trees and holiday
decorations, and he’s done so year after year since Kirby’s
new facilities opened in 2011.
What started with just one Christmas tree in the main atrium has expanded
to 10 trees this past year. “Most of the trees were nine feet or
taller; the tallest was 15 feet,” Bill describes. “This year
I had three people helping. We have to set up when there aren’t
many people around, so we did it in one weekend, starting Friday afternoon
and finishing at about 3am Monday morning. It’s quite a project!”
Recently, Bill has taken on an even bigger project than 15-foot Christmas
trees: upgrading the sales system in the Kirby gift shop.
The gift shop is a major source of fundraising for the Auxiliary, yet the
shop didn’t have a way to process credit cards. Bill suggested implementing
the stylish and modern Square system, which he used in his jewelry store
and was familiar with.
The Auxiliary agreed, and Bill went to work setting it up. This involved
registering every item in the gift shop with a bar code, price and description
within the new system. (“There are lots of items in the gift shop!”)
The new system also helps with inventory and ordering, as the database
automatically updates when a purchase is made.
Now, Bill is training the other gift shop volunteers how to use the new
system. “There are all levels of comfort with new technology, and
all the ladies are doing a wonderful job,” he says. “Everyone
is so excited and proactive about learning. Lots of credit card transactions
are already coming through!”
Bill explains why, despite his busy flying schedule, he believes in giving
back to others. “My mother was always a hospital auxiliary person
in the town where I grew up. She worked so hard; it was one of her things.
Maybe that’s where it comes from. I just grew up with it, and it’s
part of me.”
We are profoundly grateful to Bill, and all our volunteers, who make a
difference every day for Kirby patients and staff, fellow Auxiliary members,
and the whole community.