Gifts help in­jured stu­dents

Herald on Sunday - - WE SALUTE YOU - By Kelly Den­nett

Do­na­tions have flooded in for five stu­dents in­jured near school.

The five — four West­lake Girls and one West­lake Boys high school stu­dent — were in­jured on Septem­ber 20 af­ter a car mounted the foot­path on Wairau Rd and crashed into them at a bus stop.

Wit­nesses re­ported see­ing the young peo­ple flung in the air and the car was re­moved from the scene with a badly dam­aged bon­net. The scene was so dis­tress­ing stu­dents who wit­nessed the in­ci­dent were of­fered coun­selling.

Po­lice this week said in­ves­ti­ga­tions were on­go­ing and would not com­ment fur­ther. No charges have been laid against the driver, who was seen help­ing stu­dents af­ter the crash.

One girl was hos­pi­talised at Star­ship in a crit­i­cal con­di­tion and three weeks on, she re­mains in hos­pi­tal. Two oth­ers have been dis­charged, West­lake Girls prin­ci­pal Jane Stan­ley said this week.

The two schools held a col­lec­tion for the in­jured stu­dents, and lo­cal busi­nesses and com­mu­nity groups do­nated items, she said.

“Gifts and funds raised have been dis­trib­uted to the stu­dents and their fam­i­lies, along with cards and mes­sages of sup­port,” she said.

The Uni­form Group had re­placed the stu­dents’ uni­forms and PB Tech sup­plied new lap­tops and ac­ces­sories to the hos­pi­talised West­lake Girls stu­dents.

Head of ed­u­ca­tion at PB Tech, Stan Fosen­bauer, said the com­pany was keen to re­place the girls’ dam­aged lap­tops.

“When I was con­tacted by the school, they said we have three stu­dents in hos­pi­tal — and we put a do­na­tion to­gether for them. We just wanted to be the good guys here,” Fosen­bauer said.

The lap­tops were de­liv­ered to the school, rather than di­rectly to the stu­dents’ fam­i­lies. “We didn’t re­ally want to go and see them be­cause they have too much to deal with on their own.”

In a let­ter to the school, Stan­ley said the com­mu­nity sup­port had been “heart­warm­ing” and she ex­tended her thanks to schools that held mufti days to raise money, and to lo­cal busi­nesses that do­nated gifts.

Stan­ley had vis­ited the stu­dents in hos­pi­tal, and in a news­let­ter to the school’s par­ents said the teenagers were “bear­ing up well in the cir­cum­stances”.

The dam­aged car at the scene.

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