A history of caring for our community
Founded in 1948, the Wenatchee Valley Children's Guild (WVCG) is dedicated to making our community a better place to live and grow. Through the years we have embodied this ideal in many ways – staffing our hospitals, supporting our schools, and helping families in need, just to name a few, all with money raised through our famous follies shows and other fundraisers. We put every donated cent right back into the community, over one million dollars and counting. Today, we focus on enhancing the health and welfare of Wenatchee's most precious assets – our children.
In 1948, thirteen young women came together with a mission to raise money for local hospitals. As part of their planning, Marguerite Neel met with Mr. Cargill of the Cargill Producing Company to discuss their fundraising ideas in the form of a community show. On February 10, 1948, the first meeting of the Junior Wenatchee Hospital Guild was held, and Ms. Neel was elected its first President. After getting approval from the Mayor of Wenatchee to stage a show, the planning for the very first Follies show began. Committees were formed, advertisements were sold, and rehearsals were scheduled. Opening night of the inaugural Follies Show was November 3, 1948. The show was met with rave reviews and had a two-day run at the Liberty Theater on Wenatchee Avenue. It raised $4,400 (over $50,000 in today's dollars) which furnished four rooms and bought x-ray equipment for St. Anthony's & Deaconess Hospitals.
Today we continue to support our Wenatchee Valley community in many ways, with a strong focus on helping children. We have four main programs, Youth-Program Assistance, General Assistance, School Connections, and the Eva Lauve Bowling Scholarship. We also have many smaller outreach programs - you can find our members serving at a local shelter, ringing Salvation Army bells over the holidays, taking pictures for senior citizens, organizing birthday parties for children who might not otherwise have one, and so much more. We feel that no need is too great or too small because we believe that service is a cornerstone to a strong community.
We have three main fundraising activities, our follies shows, our wreath sales, and our Spring Flings. And 100% of the money we raise from these events go to our beneficiaries, as all our overhead costs are supported by membership dues.