Strange Boat - Organ Donation Awareness


Groote Schuur Stone for "Circle of Life"

At a special ceremony in Cape Town, South Africa, a symbolic presentation ceremony took place when a stone from the Groote Schuur Hospital was handed over to Strange Boat Donor Foundation for inclusion in Circle of Life, the National Commemorative Garden to Organ Donors being planned for Salthill, Galway.

At this very unique ceremony at The Heart of Cape Town Museum,  Dr. Dion O'Cuinneagain, represented Strange Boat Donor Foundation and accepted the stone which will be transported to Galway from Cape Town to be incorporated, with a stone from the other four continents, in the commemorative garden to acknowledge the universality of organ donation.

Dr. Bhavna Patel, COO at the Groote Schuur Hospital and Dr. Dion O'Cuinneagain at the presentation ceremony in Cape Town on Wednesday, 24th April.

Dion O'Cuinneagain who works with the Sports Science Institute of South Africa is a South African citizen of Irish extraction. He played international rugby for Ireland and captained the Irish team on a number of occasions, and he very graciously accepted the invitation to represent Strange Boat Donor Foundation at the hand over ceremony.

"Since first addressing the possibility of procuring a stone from the iconic Groote Schuur Hospital where the first ever heart transplant took place in 1967", Denis Goggin, founder of Strange Boat Donor Foundation said, "our  South African experience has been remarkable for the level of cooperation, assistance and goodwill we have received, and also the degree of affirmation afforded to the Irish commemorative garden itself. Having a stone from South Africa, and particularly the Groote Schuur Hospital, included in the garden will be truly inspirational and will convey a powerful message of support which will enrich the garden, as well as commemorating the humanity and extraordinary generosity of organ donors everywhere".

Guests from the Groote Schuur Hospital, The Heart of Cape Town Museum and Mr. Hugh Cunningham, (seated front row third from right), National Sales Director with Astellas Pharma Co. who sponsored the South African Stone.

Groote Schuur Hospital Cultural Chorale who performed during the hand over ceremony

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