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Welcome to the IODE Preston Chapter

IODE ... women dedicated to a better Canada

jolly holly ticket

IODE Canada is a national women's charitable organization. Women of all ages, from all walks of life and educational backgrounds, meet to undertake an extensive variety of charitable and philanthropic projects every year. These include financial assistance and contributions of time and effort to students, educational institutions, hospitals, the under-privileged and those in need.

IODE Preston Chapter has worked in Cambridge since 1920 to support our community by raising more than a quarter of a million dollars for worthy projects in Cambridge that support children and their families. Examples include:

  • Ongoing support for Cambridge Memorial Hospital
  • Strong Start Reading Programs in local Public and Catholic Schools
  • Bursaries to deserving high school students
  • Sending kids to summer camps
  • Providing children with bereavement counseling
  • Providing Canadian flags to school students
  • Laying a wreath at Cambridge Cenotaphs on Remembrance Day
  • Supporting Haven House Women’s Crisis Services, Lisaard House, Argus Residence for Young People, Cambridge Self-Help Food Bank, Kiwanis Boys Choir and many other valuable services in our community
IODE Mission Statement

IODE Canada is a national women’s charitable organization dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for individuals through education support, community service and citizenship programs.

History of the IODE

The I.O.D.E. (Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire) was founded at the turn of the 20th century by Margaret Polson Murray. She recognized the need for support for Canadians departing to fight with the Empire forces in South Africa. She formed a women’s organization based on the foundations of patriotism, loyalty and service.

Over the years, the organization evolved and is now referred to simply as IODE. IODE operates across Canada with over 3,500 members in 200 chapters.

The name IODE was officially adopted in the 1970s. IODE is a federally chartered not-for-profit charitable organization.

Instead of sending parcels to soldiers fighting overseas and supporting their families at home, IODE chapters now fight for children, youth and those in need.

The Preston Chapter

The Preston Chapter was founded in 1920. Thirty-five women met to start the Preston Chapter and elect our first Regent (now called President), Mrs. Frank Pattison. Within a year, the membership grew to over 100.

The early years saw members raising funds to furnish the Preston wing of the old Galt Hospital, doing relief work during the depression years, offering sewing classes and starting the Girl Guides in 1929.

During the Second World War, Christmas boxes were assembled and sent to the Canadian troops and for needy families at home. Members knitted items for those in need and operated salvage drives to collect steel and reusable materials for the war effort.

The IODE Preston Chapter, has raised more than $250,000 for the Cambridge community. Each year our primary fundraiser, The Jolly Holly Festive Tour, an “open house” tour of five unique homes, raises about $20,000 for worthy causes in our community.

IODE Preston Chapter thanks our community for its support over the years.
Anyone wishing to join IODE can contact us at

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