The Samantha Kirk Making A Difference Fund First Aid Training Programme Launch

March 25, 2024 | Campus, Thandulwazi

In 2023, St Stithians College student Samantha Kirk passed away after suffering a traumatic heart event linked to a syndrome called Long QT. At the time of her passing, the family requested that donations in lieu of flowers be made to the Thandulwazi Maths and Science Academy. The family felt that in line with her legacy of making a difference in other people’s lives, helping students from our Thandulwazi Maths and Science Academy would be a fitting way to honour Samantha’s memory.

The Kirk family requested that the generous contributions, from a number of donors, be used to create more awareness and to up-skill our Thandulwazi students and teachers with essential life skills by facilitating training of CPR, first aid and the use of automated external defibrillators (AEDs). It was therefore fitting to formally launch this programme at our Thandulwazi Saturday School assembly and touching to see each student receive a bracelet made by our Thandulwazi and St Stithians community engagement students as a reminder of the importance of first aid - and of course - of Samantha.

The launch and roll out of the First Aid Training programme is what was celebrated on this day and the morning's programme, after our Superintendent Chaplain, Rev Elroy Kekana, opened in prayer, included speeches by our Head of Thandulwazi, Mr Velaphi Gumbi, Head of Advancement Alistair Stewart, Sam's sisters, Jenna (16) and Maxine (13) and their Mother, Lorna. Some wise words on the benefits of knowing basic first aid were added by Hayley Rosenthal of Hayley First Aid Training. The heart-warming event was concluded by our Rector of the College, Celeste GIlardi and was a fitting way to honour Sam.

To date more than 190 learners and teachers from our Thandulwazi Saturday School have already experienced this training by Hayley Rosenthal of Hayley First Aid Training and the programme will continue to train our Thandulwazi learners and teachers, giving them these life-saving skills and turning them into every day heroes!

Rev Elroy formally closed proceedings by reciting the Prayer of St Francis:

LORD, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon,
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sadness, joy.

O DIVINE MASTER, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console:
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.

For it is in giving that we receive –
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned.
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

Thank you to #OneAndAll who joined us to officially launch the Samantha Kirk Making A Difference Fund First Aid Training Programme - it was a very special morning.

For anyone who would like to donate to this very worthy cause, please visit: The Samantha Kirk Making A Difference Fund

#inspiringexcellence #makingaworldofdifference #one4allall4one #purposeinspired #passiondriven #Legacy #ForSam