Log In

Reset Password

Teen celebrated for act of kindness

Inspiring student: Stuart Hayward thanks the Berkeley Institute’s Zeico Swan for helping him after his bike accident (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

A Berkeley Institute student’s conscientious nature has been celebrated after he helped environmental activist Stuart Hayward following a bike accident.

Mr Hayward, chairman of the Bermuda Environmental and Sustainability Taskforce, was riding into his driveway near the school when he “flew off the handlebars” and landed on the ground.

That was when S1 “Berkeleyite” Zeico Swan, 15, came to the rescue, dropping his schoolbag and rushing to Mr Hayward’s assistance.

He first ensured that Mr Hayward, who has Parkinson’s Disease, was not badly injured and then attended to his bike.

He thought that was the end of it but yesterday Mr Hayward visited the school and spoke to students about how he believed sustainability comes in five forms — physical, social, political, economic and cultural.

On this occasion, he wanted to celebrate the social aspect, saying: “Our social environment is about how we treat each other”.

In encouraging positive social behaviour, he used the teenager to demonstrate the simple act of good citizenship and Samaritanism.

Mr Hayward said: “He could have just ignored me and left me to pick up my bike on my own, he could have laughed and moved on but he stopped and helped me.

“There were three things I wanted to do — I wanted to honour him and encourage this kind of behaviour; I was hoping to inspire other students and teachers who were there to also be ready to be helpful to their fellow citizens; and the exposure — I thought it was important to expose an occasion of laudable conduct on the part of a local high school student.”

Mr Hayward presented Zeico with a gift voucher and presented the school with a copy of his book, Bermuda’s Delicate Balance , for inclusion in the library.

Zeico said: “My mum has always told me to help people if they need it. He came to the school and thanked me in front of everyone. It was a surprise, I was pretty shocked.

“I would say try to help everyone in need because one day you might need it, too.”

After Mr Hayward’s assembly speech, the young people broke into applause to celebrate their fellow student and some even stood to congratulate him.

The school’s principal, Phyllis Curtis-Tweed, then thanked Mr Hayward for his presentation.

“Just as Zeico chose to help, it was important to celebrate the fact that Mr Hayward has chosen to acknowledge Zeico in such a way that would certainly encourage positive behaviour from all students,” Dr Curtis-Tweed said.