We were shocked and deeply saddened to receive the news of the sudden death of Natania on Saturday 25 January.
Natania first contacted us in December 2010 asking about becoming a volunteer. From the off her enthusiasm, energy and commitment were inspiring. She started one afternoon a week but very soon she was in the workshop every day.
At first she took her time to learn the skills of tool refurbishment but it was clear for all to see how much she was excited by what she was doing. She developed her skills rapidly and became adept at refurbishing all kinds of tools and machinery – in her last week with us she had started to dismantle a Pillar Drill! She even became adept at refurbishing sewing machines – one of our very few volunteers to learn both skill sets.
However Natania brought much more to the workshop than her superb manual skills. She was great with people and provided support and empathy to the other volunteers. She particularly demonstrated this when she worked with the school children from Ardmore School. They responded really well to how Natania related to them – sharing her own enthusiasm and interest to inspire them. Working with young people became something of a passion for Natania and led her to undertake a youth course in Belfast.
Natania had an amazing singing voice and kindly performed a solo spot at a benefit night when Jane – the manager of the MSTC – visited us in November 2012. I remember getting the pints in to calm her nerves but she didn’t need them. She was a pure natural. All who were there will remember the beauty and power of her voice. Here is her singing Hallelujah.
Her family are compiling a CD of her songs and hope to use it to raise funds for PIPS – a local charity supporting families that have been affected by suicide. We will let people know about the launch of the CD.
The workshop in Downpatrick is there as a space for people to come together, to work helping others and to support one another. Natania represents all that is good about what we try to do. The workshop and everyone who goes there will miss her……
Six months after she started at Tools Natania was interviewed by the local paper about why she had taken the step to become a volunteer. It is fitting to finish with her words of inspiration and hope…
“I volunteer as it feels so good to know that what I do can help provide a new lease of life for people that otherwise wouldn’t have the chance to change their lives on their own.
The highlight of my volunteering to date has been meeting the people I work with – from the local people to the visitors from other countries… I have made new friends and had a lot of good times.”
Her family create a memorial website for Natania for anyone who wants to say a few words. Click here to see it.