Pieter du Toit 1969


The Reverend Pieter du Toit was born at Philipstown, C.P. on 30th October 1892. He attended school at Edenburg and Boshoff from which he matriculated in 1908.

In 1909 he enrolled as a first-year student at the Grey University College for the B.A. degree which he obtained in 1911. At the end of 1912 he completed the first part of the M.A. degree at the same University College. After completing his entrance examination to the Theological Seminary, he commenced with his theological studies at the Victoria College, Stellenbosch, where he completed his final examinations at the end of 1917.

From 1918 to 1930 he served as a minister at Ermelo and Lichtenburg. During 1931 he was appointed the first General Secretary for the Synodical Commission for Poor Relief in Transvaal. In 1935 he became the first Commissioner for Social Welfare, a position which he filled with success until 1938 when he accepted a post as Minister at the Groote Kerk in Cape Town. In 1943 he was appointed General Secretary for Poor Relief (Later Charity Services) of the Dutch Reformed Church of the Cape, a position which he still holds.

The Reverend Pieter du Toit played an important role in the social welfare of our country and the magnitude of his contributions in this field can never be over-emphasised.

At the National Congress in respect of the Poor White problem he played a leading role and was thereafter elected chairman of the Continuation Committee with the late Dr H. F. Verwoerd as Deputy Chairman.

He undertook several overseas tours to make a study of institutions for the care of children and of the aged. In 1932 he was granted a Carnegie bursary to study social services in the United States of America.

The Reverend du Toit is considered an authority, of very high standing, on social and charity services, and was appointed to serve on several Government commissions. Even today he serves on several public bodies, some of which he was a founder member. He also published several important works in this field.

It is therefore an honour and privilege for the University of Port Elizabeth to honour the Reverend Pieter du Toit in this manner for services rendered to our nation and our country.