A TRIBUTE TO 3 INCREDIBLE YOUNG PEOPLE
JENNA LOWE | NATALIE COHEN A| CRAIG BROWN
We received these beautiful benches from Shirley Tobias, owner of Art for All. Shirley has raised funds for the hospital through her various art groups.The benches were painted by Shirley’s art groups.
We would like to convey our heartfelt thanks on behalf of everyone at the hospital for the exquisitely painted benches received in memory of Jenna Lowe, Craig Brown and Natalie Cohen, who so bravely fought their illnesses and will now always be remembered at Maitland Cottage Hospital. One cannot help but think of these 3 brave young people every time one looks at these benches.
The following is from Craig, Jenna and Natalie’s mom’s.
JENNA – In 2012 teenager, Jenna Lowe, was diagnosed with an extremely rare lung disease called Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension. Even with this debilitating illness Jenna became an active campaigner to raise awareness for this degenerative, life-threatening condition. Bright, beautiful and eloquent, Jenna demonstrated exceptional leadership and courage throughout her three and half year battle with her illness and helped change the landscape of Pulmonary Hypertension in South Africa. She also made (and her legacy continues to make) a massive social impact on the dire state of organ donation in SA with her internationally acclaimed and award-winning #Getmeto21 campaign that significantly increased organ donor registration.
Tragically Jenna passed away in June 2015; but her work continues.
Visit the Jenna Lowe Trust at to find out more about the incredible legacy she is leaving. www.jennalowe.org
or https://www.getmeto21.com/ to sign up as an organ donor.
NATALIE – https://www.facebook.com/nataliescircleoflove/?fref=ts
Natalie was 10 years old when she was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer that affected her spine. Her love of nature, art, reading and animals was a source of inspiration and joy throughout her difficult journey with Chordoma. She spent many months in hospital in America where she had surgery to remove 7 vertebrae from her thoracic spine and earned enormous respect for her determination to relearn to sit, stand, walk and eventually, even run! Whether she was in hospital or at home, Natalie’s space was always filled with Art & Design, some by her own creation and some gifted by Natalie’s Circle of Love – a global community inspired by her courage, grace and determination to live a creative life. Some of the happiest times were art making sessions with her friends and she especially loved visits from her much-loved art teacher, Shirley Tobias, who had a special connection with Natalie and mentored her creativity with so much love, gratitude and respect.
Towards the end of her life Natalie was drawn to dragonflies which in almost every part of the world, symbolise change and self realisation
Although a cure was not possible for Natalie, thanks to the incredible support of her Circle of Love, she experienced profound healing and a deep, enduring sense of connection that transcends her time on earth. Like the iridescent dragonfly, Natalie reflected the beauty she saw in the world and her humour, poise, personal power and creativity remain an inspiration to us all.
A photo of Natalie is attached
CRAIG – Craig was always very small in stature,but with an enormous zest for life which is why I chose the quote from Dr Seuss “A person’s a person no matter how small”, . ( He also acted in Seussical the Musical, as the baby kangaroo from “Horton Hears a Who ” , just before he was diagnosed with a brain tumour at the age of 12). He died 8 months later, a time during which his positivity,courage and sense of humour really came to the fore.
It is with great sadness that we record the death of Mr Martin Singer on 5 July this year. Mr Singer was an integral part of Maitland Cottage Home from 1956 when he started as an honorary orthopaedic surgeon, he was instrumental in the design and commissioning of the current operating theatre and served as honorary medical superintendent until 31 October 2014, a 58 year partnership. Mr Singer made an extremely significant contribution to Maitland Cottage Hospital and UCT. Mr Singer will be missed by all who knew him.
Mr Martin Singer made a significant contribution to UCT Orthopaedic Department and South African Orthopaedics for a period of almost 60 years, from the time he started in private practice in 1956 in Cape Town until his death in July this year.
At Maitland Cottage he treated mainly children with bone and joint tuberculosis and children recovering from polio. He always had an interest in club feet and took over the club foot clinic from Ginger Keen.He worked at MCH from 1956 until he was succeeded by Prof Teddy Hoffman in 1987, i.e., 31 years. He continued to visit the hospital weekly until his death. Pure dedication to a place that was so very dear to him.
Although he retired in 1986, he still remained actively involved with MCH as superintendent. He was actively involved at MCH for 58 years. Mr Singer was academically involved in 35 peer review publications. He enthusiastically encouraged all Registrars and nothing made him more happy and proud than when a paper was published or presented coming from MCH or the Hand Unit in which he was so involved. He left a legacy that is MCH.
A group of our Physiotherapy interns from Amsterdam have been raising funds for a new Ultrasound machine for our physio department, through an international funding site, GOFUNDME. The Ultrasound machine assists with bone healing and pain management. It has all been very exciting as we got to the target in just 15 days of raising the necessary amount. ! We are very excited to announce that the Ultrasound Machine arrived at Maitland Cottage on 11 August.
Our physiotherapist, Zara is thrilled and our little patients are already benefitting. A huge thank you to Lia Hoensbroech Coreen Roth and Elon Perez and to all who contributed on GOFUNDME. Our gratitude is huge !!
In 2013, Ariella was diagnosed with severe Scoliosis, a condition which causes abnormal twisting and curvature of the spine.
After many consultations with various specialists, Ariella was fitted with her RSC brace which she had to wear for 2 years. Ariella’s school principal, teachers and friends were amazing with her, accepting her situation without a question. Ariella has been wearing her brace since September 2013 and is now coming to the end of her “brace” journey. Luckily, she does not have to wear it during the day any more but only at night.
In preparation of Ariella’s Bat Mitzvah, she and her family decided to look into ways of giving back to the community in honour of this special milestone in her Jewish life. They looked for a charity that would resonate well with Ariella as an individual and one that would she could feel proud being a part of. Ariella wanted to give back to children whom she could help that were in a similar situation to her.
Her Paediatrician told them about THE MAITLAND COTTAGE hospital and the wonderful work they do for children with physical Orthopaedic disabilities. Immediately, they knew, the fit was perfect. Ariella came to visit the kids at the hospital and was most taken aback on her first few visits. After a while, she realized that despite their disabilities, they were just kids… just like her and her friends. Ariella raised funds and collected many items donated by lots of family, friends and strangers alike.
Her mom, Lauren, made a request to SPUR STEAK RANCHES who jumped at the opportunity to come on board and supplied a burger, chips and cool drink to all the kids and staff at the home while King Cake Party Shop delivered 100’s of balloons to brighten up the hearts, smiles and bedsides of the kids. It was a wonderful day that will always be remembered and Ariella learnt so much from this experience. Ariella and Lauren look forward to many more days of interaction with the staff, kids and management of MAITLAND COTTAGE CHILDRENS ORTHOPAEDIC HOSPITAL.
On the 14th may the Annual Bridge drive was held to raise funds. as usual a lovely day was had by all the attending bridge players, with delicious food and goodies to eat and drink and numerous prizes to be won. Thanks to all donators, to old mutual house for the venue and for the ladies who come every year to support our hospital
Girls will be girls as some of the little ones played dolly and mummy with newly donated dress up gear…
Lots of discussion about shoes took place and general wardrobe baby talk…aren’t they too sweet?!
Last year, as the result of successful fundraising, we were able to build a physiotherapy department. Our next wish was to transform the area next to this department into a fynbos garden. Our vision was that the area becomes a place for the children to practice walking again and learn to use wheelchairs on surfaces that they would encounter in their home environments.
A keen gardener from the Netherlands, Jeannet Appel, heard about this project and spent many months researching South African plants and designing the transformation of an area covered in lawn into a colourful child friendly garden. To turn this plan into a reality she and two volunteers came to Maitland Cottage Home to “plant” the garden. In ten days of hard labour and much joviality they transformed the area into a children’s paradise. Stone paths, fruit trees, vegetables, herbs and a wide selection of mainly indigenous plants not to mention the house and “wish tent”, the transformation was amazing.
With the help of other volunteers and donors the children created colourful mosaic collages, a totem pole and painted wooden butterflies to brighten up the area.