When Canadian men rushed to the recruiting stations in 1914, professionally trained nurses could enlist with the Canadian Army Medical Corps (CAMC); the first contingent, composed of 101 nursing sisters, sailed for England as early as September 1914.  For women who were not trained nurses, however, there were relatively few opportunities to actively participate in the war, much less overseas. One such opportunity was the Voluntary Aid Detachment.
As the men in small Canadian communities left to fight the war in Europe, those at home looked for ways to contribute to the war effort themselves. The civilian mobilization of the First World War, and after it the Second, was all encompassing and those on the Home Front found themselves collecting scrap materials, knitting socks and making parcels for the Red Cross, all to support the war effort. Continue reading “Home fires burning: Civilian fundraising in the First World War”