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VOLUNTARY `VAR RELIEF   199

voluntary war relief can be accounted accurate which is based upon a survey of organized effort alone. We must not ignore the vast volume of correspondence, of money gifts, and of parcels of every conceivable size, weight and shape which swelled the mail-sacks of the Post Office and followed across the ocean the beloved husband, son, brother, or fiance who was none the less a member of the family because he had left his home. Of such gifts no record can be kept, no statistics compiled. They are enshrined in the privacy of home life and they express the most sacred emotion of the human heart. For such gifts the German has an eloquent name. He calls them "Liebesgaben" or "love-gifts." If it is lawful to learn even from an enemy, we can borrow from the Hun this beautiful name—for no truer description could be found.

Another class of individual gifts, which might easily be omitted if attention were confined to the records of societies, includes those offered by the possessors of some peculiar talent. In this class, we should include the service rendered by actors, musicians, authors, and artists who offered their gifts for the entertainment of soldiers and sailors or to raise funds for patriotic purposes. In this class, for example, we find Madame Melba, who passed through Canada like a meteor, giving a series of brilliant concerts, the gross proceeds of which were devoted to the Canadian Red Cross Society; and her example was followed by hundreds of other artists, less famous, perhaps, but not less generous. Professional men, busy all day in office or class-room, robbed them-selves of well-earned leisure in order to familiarize them-selves with the work of some relief society that they might be able to speak or write in its support; or gave their service as honorary secretaries or treasurers of such organizations. Medical men and nurses responded generously to the appeals for assistance in the preparation of Red Cross supplies or for instruction in ambulance and hospital nursing.


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