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|Publisher||Digitized by J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah|
WOMAN'S EXPONENT. REPORT OF THE NATIONAL WOMAN'S of the members, who had many of them come long distances to attend, for instance from Mexico, Canada and far off States, as well as those nearer Utah, where the headquarters of the society is established in RELIEF SOCIETY. Madame President and Officers National Council, Delegates, sentatives and Friends. of the Repre- We have the honor to submit to you at this time the report of the National Woman's Relief Society from the last Triennial session of the Council, in Febru-ai1899. to the present Triennial, February, 1902, inclusive. I am most happy to be able to state that the growth of this organization has been greater during the last three years, numerically and otherwise, than heretofore during the same period of time, and that a deeper sense of the purposes, scope and breadth of the work, as originally intended fact. by its founders, is another To the advantages and opportunity opened to women more recently because of the advancement made every where in education of a better and more practical nature, this more rapid growth may be largely due, or, shall we say, to the awakening of both men and women to a higher sense of the responsibilities resting upon them as part and parcel of the world's great commonwealth? However, we need not deal with causes, but simply state conditions, as they have developed duiing the interim of the three From the ranks of our society years. membership more women have been called into active service by being placed in positions of trust that would necessarily call out latent powers in the individual, arid this, we must admit, is always helpful to the person, the society and the community. Many more branches of the organization have been started, all under the supervision of the general officers, but each equipped with the respective offices of secretaries and president, treasurer, and the various committees necessary as helps, generally among us called teachers. Each separate society has its own fund and accumulates means in such ways as are practicable; for instance, voluntary donations by members form the nucleus, but working meetings for sewing, quilting and making up new material, bazars, concerts and dancing parties under the auspices of the society, help to make an amount sufficient for all needful expenses. Means thus accumulated is sometimes used for a special purpose, stipulated for beforehand, so that all understand; but all collections from whatever sources, and disbursements for whatever purposes, are regularly reported in business meetings, in each branch society, so that no one need be in doubt about expenditures. It is really been wonderlul what has accomplished in Each localities. this way even in remote the under branch society has a legal status trustees of laws of the State, and a board to manage its affairs, with the Hundreds and approval of its members. of these branches own halls of their own in which to meet, and for purposes of work and storing of various articles owned by the society. Some have built amusement halls for local entertainments, concerts and so on. Many have granaries well filled with wheat against a day of scarcity and famine, and altogether the society is in a flourishing condition as to its general status and welfare. In the General Conference of the Society held October, 1898, at a business meeting y, self-evide-nt vice-president- s, i Salt Lake City, the discussion of ways and means to maintain headquarters and to car-- : ry on the missionary work necessary and to defray the expenses of such a great organization, culminated in a proposition to collect annually from each member ten cents for a general fund, this collection' to be made on the 17th of March, the anniversary of the first organization. In March, 1899, the first collection was made, and it has been continued since, each succeeding year. By this means calls for special donations have been avoided and the result has been most gratifying; for every one knows how difficult it is to collect money to defray expenses of printing, stationery, stamps and those "little incidentals that are unavoidable in carrying on the work of even small organizations. In April of that year, too, the society commenced collecting money by voluntary donation towards erecting a Woman's Building in Salt Lake City for the use and purposes of the General Society, the land having been given to the society for the building in a most desirable locality on the Main Street, opposite the Salt Lake Temple. There is not yet sufficient money donatec but there is a good prospect that all needed will be forthcoming in the near futuie, or when it shall be deemed expedient to commence the building. The officers of the General Society and in all the several Stakes their and branches look forward with delightful' anticipation to the completion of this Woman's Building, and expect to have within its walls a library and bureau of information, that will be in the best sense educational, and be open to all members of the society, and where lectures may be given by distinguished professors in all branches of science, art and literature, and on general topics. These hopes and ambitions can only be given the briefest mention in a report of this kind, but this society has recently introduced' in a small way lectures and talks upon suggestive subjects, that will lead to a broad field of culture in this Lectures on hygiene and direction. domestic science are at present perhaps the most popular, but such as pertain to home and motherhood have always been considered a legitimate part of th Relief Society movement. In the report made to the Council in 1899. casual mention was made of the nurses class or classes; since then much has been done in this line of charity work, aud should receive special mention on account of its great value to the society and A call was made in Salt the public weal. Lake City and County for girls and young women volunteers to study nursing and receive training under the auspices of the Relief Society, so that they would be qualified to give skilled attendance to the sick One hundred or more responded to poor. cookthe call, they were also instructed in ' food At for the invalids. ing and serving one hundred close of the term about young women received certificates to practice in the profession of nurses from the medical examiners, who have since highly approved of their splendid work in attending the , 85 The nurses' classes have been under the direction of superintendents, appointed by the officers of the society to take charge of the work, though the instruction was given free by a woman physician who called to her aid the most eminent of the medical fraternity in the city, to give lectures, now and then, to the classes in her charge. In connection with the nurses department of work in the Relief Society, there is an emergency closet well supplied with clothing for mother and child, cots and every convenience for the comfort and cleanliness of the patient, and all that is needful to make the burden lighter all around. There have also been nurses' classes in connection with obstetrics taught in other parts of Utah and in Arizona, Idaho and Mexico, and it is the intention of the General Society to extend this class of training for nurses until every society has skilled nurses to call to its aid in times of sickness among the poor, that they may have the benefit of the same intelligent nursing and care as those who can afford to pay for skilled attendance. In the society official visits are made by at least two members of the General Board from time to time to conferences of the society in different localities, and uniform instruction is given, so that all may work in harmony, each Stake, as it is termed, consisting of two or more branches, receiving at least one or two visits a year, even though the distance is great. During the year 1899 the branches of the society in England, Scotland and Wales were visited, and more recently the Scandinavian countries have been visited by sisters from Utah. Mrs. Lucy B. Young was appointed while residing temporarily in Germany to preside over the branches of the Relief Society in that country and also in Switzerland. The branches in the Sandwich Islands are also presided over by a president from Utah. Nearly every branch, if not every, one in the United States, Canada and Mexico has been visited during this last year, and very much has been done for the last thirty years by official correspondence and through the columns of the Woman's Exponent. Among other things, the Relief Society during the last three years has been doing some active work in the interest of the movement for universal peace and arbitration; but it is impossible to enumerate all that this society has undertaken. The work is increasing and multiplying as well as the membership, and it - scarcely seems possible to do all that is really desirable, but our women are zealously striving to live by the Golden Rule, and do the duty that lies nearest and walk in the light of truth and follow the pattern set by the blessed Savior and Redeemer of the world of mankind. This assembly of representative women are, we are sure, most of them aware of the loss sustained by our society in the death of our beloved and revered president, Mrs ZinaD.H.Young.but though we mourn her absence and miss her gentle ministrations and sublime teachings and counsel, yet we feel comforted in the blessed assurance of her having passed from death unto life, and that she has entered into the rest prepared for the faithful, and joined the innumerable company on the other side where there is no more sorrow or mourn- sick. - !