What is a May Court Club?
It is a dedicated group of volunteer women whose mission is to improve the lives of those in their community who are less fortunate. Its members raise funds through various projects and fundraisers. It uses the money raised to provide financial assistance to needy organizations or individuals, with particular emphasis on health, high-risk children and youth and school nutrition programs. It is also a group of volunteers who give 1000’s of hours each year to make all their projects possible and productive, but also takes time for social events and friend raising.
When was the May Court Club founded?
The first May Court Club, Ottawa was created by Lady Aberdeen, wife of the Governor General of Canada in 1898. This makes May Court the oldest service club in Canada, an incredible distinction for Canadian women! The wife of the Governor General of Canada continues as our Patron today. Her Excellency, Sharon Johnston, C.C. is our current Patron.
Lady Aberdeen was a woman, ahead of her time, well meaning, compassionate and visionary, she was also a lady of action. In the five years she was in Canada from 1893-1898, she founded The May Court Club, The Victorian Order of Nurses and the Council of Women. As a wife and a mother, she was sensitive to social ills and at the forefront of the reform movement in Canada, believing in and working towards social justice for all.
We continue this very important work in our 9 Member Clubs in Ontario today (Barrie, Brockville, Chatham, Kitchener-Waterloo, London, Oakville, Ottawa, St. Catharines & Windsor) with 1500 women donating more than 140,000 hours to raise more than $1,000,000 annually.
Our umbrella organization, The Association of May Court Clubs of Canada includes 2 delegates from each of our 9 clubs and an executive committee of 5 elected from past club presidents.
When was the May Court Club of Oakville created?
The May Court Club of Oakville was founded in 1956 and is a registered Charity (#11924-4614-RR0001). Initial projects included: sewing and typing for the Victorian Order of Nurses (VON), teaching sewing, cooking, and music to the special needs children at the Bruce Lynn School, and driving patients to various clinics in Oakville, Hamilton and Toronto.
Much of the Club’s work focuses on society’s most vulnerable – women and children.
Many successes large and small have been accomplished by the May Court Club of Oakville.
A few of the many examples are:
- In 1957, our May Court Nearly New Shop consignment store opened.
- In 1959, we established our first May Court Scholarship Program.
- In 1967, our Club established the first daycare centre for working mothers -- today it is called the Sedgewick Day Care Centre.
- In 1975, we undertook a major project and made an initial pledge of $75,000 to open Carey House – a Cheshire group home to provide accommodation with support services for young adults with physical disabilities. Since that time May Court’s total financial support has been approximately $150,000.
- In 1982, The May Court Puppet Program which is presented to schools and reinforces street safety, anti-bullying and social issues launched.
- In 1991, the Lunch Box Program that is now available in 44 schools was launched.
- The Club’s fundraising projects and events have raised over 2.5 million dollars which has been invested back into the community for those in need and for programs that reinforce educational themes.
- In 2012-2013 year, fulfilled 5 year pledge of $100,000.00 to the new Wellspring Birmingham Gilgan House in 3 years - May 2013! In total, May Court disbursed nearly $175,000 back into our community in 2012-2013 (includes Wellspring pledge, May Court Scholarship & Lunch Box Programs and other supported Charities).
- In 2013-2014 year, disbursed $100,000.00 to 20 charities, $68,000.00 in scholarships and from our Table Tops Fundraiser $36,735.00 to ROCK (Reach Out Centre For Kids)!
How do we raise funds?
We raise funds through our May Court Nearly New Shop along with various fundraising events and generous donations. Our fundraising follows in the footsteps of the Festival of Trees that for 20 years raised more than a quarter of a million dollars; current fundraising events include:
- The May Court Fashion Show
- The May Court Cuvée
- Scholarship Fundraiser
- Table Tops Decorating and Entertaining Trends
- and our special 2013 event, Art Around the Benz
Where does the money you raise go?
- All of the net profits raised from our Fundraising Events, our May Court Nearly New Shop and 100% of all donations go directly to support our own May Court Programs & Charities.
The May Court Club of Oakville has no administrative costs and all of our members volunteer their time as part of our commitment to community service.
How do I become a member?
If you are interested in joining a group of over 200 dynamic women who have been giving to the community since 1956, please click here to find more information and membership forms.
Membership with the The May Court Club of Oakville is fulfilling and fun - please consider joining!
How can I help?
News & Updates
PO Box 761, Lakeshore West
Oakville, ON L6K 0A9
Charitable Registration #