In loving memory of Sr Dominica Siegel OP
Called home by God
In 1999 Sr Dominica began to work with ST JOHN AMBULANCE ASSOCIATION OF ZIMBABWE.
The Secretary for Education and Culture, Dr T.A. Tsodzo, wrote in March 2004, to Sr Dominica,
“Due to your passion for promoting the education system and supporting rural schools, you left the Ministry and started CATORUZI, a program which facilitated the recruitment of 300 qualified Christian Secondary School Teachers from overseas to offer mainly Science, Mathematics, English, and French in rural schools.
I, therefore would greatly appreciate working with you, as I understand you were greatly involved in the successful establishment of the Catholic University’… I hope that you can be instrumental in starting a fruitful relationship between St John’s Ambulance and the Ministry, more so now when children need survival skills and training in life-saving skills.”
On 4 April 2005, Her Majesty the Queen of England sanctioned Sr Dominica’s admission as a “ SERVING SISTER IN THE ORDER OF ST JOHN.” She started the program for training HBC (Home Based Care) for Leaders of child-headed households in 2007. This was meant for those who were nursing their bedridden family members at home. This program was very helpful in the communities. She targeted high-density areas, farms, and resettlements. More than 15000 youngsters were trained. This helped more than 50 000 beneficiaries.
To fund these programs, she worked with a lot of organisations, like Oak Foundation, Stichting Porticus, the British Embassy, the German Embassy, Beit Trust, Johanniter, and the British Humane Society. She worked very hard to try and reach as many people as she could through the St John Centres.
Since she was a teacher herself, she noted some of the problems faced by schools and so she started the schools’ program. School Teachers were trained in First Aid and Home Based Care (HBC) and would in turn train the school children in school clubs. She donated beds, blankets, and HBC kits to schools. This program saw a lot of youngsters in schools being trained and becoming very helpful in schools, at home, and in the community.
She also identified young people who needed help in the community and schools and would help with food, clothing, and school fees.
A block of classrooms was built in her name at the Harare Centre. The construction of the classrooms was made possible by The Federal Republic of German, The Beit Trust, and Porticus Africa LTD. The classes were officially opened on 15 June 2017.
Sr Dominica celebrated her 90th birthday on 20 March 2023. On the evening of 23rd July, after the Sisters attended to her, trying to make her as comfortable as possible for the night, at 19.45 hours she breathed her last and quietly slipped away.
She leaves behind one of her sisters, Resi, and a beloved nephew Lawrence.