Vona du Toit Lecture


Vona du Toit Memorial Lecture

Vona du ToitThe Vona du Toit award is a very prestigious award for Occupational Therapist who excels in the profession. The object of this memorial lecture is to honour the late Vona du Toit, who was a pioneer in the development of OT, encouraged research and promoted training for the practice of OT. The first lecture was presented in 1976 – see table below for more information. 

A bit of background on Vona du Toit: Her studies and OT career

She studied OT at WITS and obtained her diploma in 1946.
She worked at a variety of places and established a few OT services as well.
In 1955 she was co-responsible for establishing the three year OT course at Pretoria OT School.
In 1962 she obtained her Teaching Diploma in OT at UP (with Honours) 
In 1963 she became the principal of the Pretoria College of OT and the head of OT at HF Verwoerd Hospital, Pretoria. In this capacity she had far reaching influence on the practice of OT in SA. She lectured on creative ability, child handling, interpersonal relationships and philosophy.
In 1973 she became the first chairman of the SA Medical and Dental Council: OT Professional Board. Her work on the identification and restoration of volition and action will provide text book material for many years to come. 
The Pretoria Multi-motivational Therapeutic Apparatus was developed through her formulation of the policy ans philosophy end extensive marketing through publications and demonstrations.
She inspired the introduction of work orientation programmes as part of OT. 

Prizes and Awards 

In 1986 she was awarded “Professional Woman of the year” from SA Business and Professional Woman’s Federation 


She served in many capacities including SAAOT President and Chairman of the Education Committee. She was also rewarded as Honorary Life President.
She was the WFOT delegate, elected as WFOT 2 nd Vice President in 1970, WFOT 1st Vice President in 1972 and WFOT Honorary Fellow in 1974. 
She also presented various papers and presentations at national and international congresses. 

Vona passed away on 12 September 1974. 

Year  Recipient  Position  Lecture title 
2014 Prof. Alfred Ramukumba Head of Department
Economic Occupations – The ‘hidden key’ to transformation
Click here to view the presentation
2011 Dr Daleen Casteleijn OT The stepping stones from input to outcomes: An Occupational Perspective
2009 Dr Kitty Uys OT Wisdom from within: Finding modern truths in traditional proverbs.
2007  Vivyan Alers  OT  Proposing the social atom of Occupational Therapy: Dealing with trauma as part of an integrated inclusive intervention 
2004  Corrianne van Velze  OT  Making new endings 
2002  Prof. Pat de Wit  OT  The Occupation of Occupational Therapy 
1999  Madeleine Duncan  OT Lecturer: UCT  “Our bit in the calabash”: thoughts on Occupational Therapy transformation in SA 
1997  Robin Joubert     Where from? What now? Where to? 
1995  Estelle Shipham  Head OT MEDUNSA  Bolts and nuts: the competitive edge 
1993  Dr Rosemary Crouch  OT  Courage, conviction and confidence: fundamental elements for the survival of Occupational Therapy in the new SA 
1991  Elna Jooste  OT  “Some Ethical Considerations concerning Competition and Advertising in Occupational Therapy”  “Etlike Etiese Oorwegings Rondom Mededinging en Reklame in Arbeidsterapie”
1989  Pamela McClaren/Haynes  OT  How can Occupational Therapy in SA contribute to the attainment of rehabilitation for all? 
1987  Dain van der Reyden  OT  Creative participation – 20 years later 
1985  Dr Hannah-Reeve Saunders  Chief Medical Superintendent, Groote Schuur Hospital  Occupational Therapy, occupational Therapists – and now? 
1984  William Rowlands  Director, National Council for the Blind  Assertiveness 
1983  Prof. Marjorie Concha  Head OT Wits  Perception: Occupational Therapy in perspective 
1982  P.V. Tobias  Head Anatomy and Dean: Faculty of Medicine WITS  The past and future of Occupational Therapy in SA 
1981  Prof. F.P. Retief  Rector Medunsa  Occupational Therapy: its relevance for SA 
1980  Valerie Claxton  OT  Title 
1979  Prof. Ruth Watson  OT Lecturer, US  The second mile 
1978  Christa Meyer  OT  Let us do things in style 
1977  Prof. G.T. du Toit  OTASA Honorary President  A suggestion and a challenge 
1976  Alicia Mendez  WFOT President  Whither Occupational Therapy