Saving lives is usually reserved to doctors, firefighters, and police officers. Through the organization “Donate Live,” and organ donation across the country, everyday people can give others a second chance at life. Organ donation is typically a “taboo” topic of discussion, but people need to realize the facts and what kind of impact they can have in the world. One person can save 8 lives through organ donation or 50 lives through tissue donation. There are over 116,000 people on the waiting list for a donation, and only 3 in 1000 are medically eligible to donate upon date of death. Organ donors are needed, and all it takes is your courage to sign-up and say, “I want to save lives”.
At our event on February 20th we started off the night fun with an activity about marketing and community awareness. We divided into groups and created a charity that was judged on creativity, possible impact, and the ability to incorporate AMA colors red and black. The winning team created the charity “Undies for the Underprivileged” where they supplied underprivileged people with the ability to wear clean underwear. After our mini-competition we were taught the real facts of organ donation, and shown the need for it around the country. However, organ donation is not just facts on a paper, it involves real people every day.
Two people with a personal connection to this organization are Marisa Garcia and Nancy Reyes; Marisa is a tissue recipient and Nancy is a donor sister. Marisa was an athlete that injured her knee ,and as a result could not stand up straight or walk. Marisa went through two surgeries and a year of painful physical therapy to learn how to reuse her knee. Marisa wrote a letter to her donor family, and was able to meet them on several occasions. Less than 1% of donor recipients are able to meet their donor families, so Marisa was given a great gift. Donation has given her the strength to perform daily tasks that we take for granted. Nancy is on the other side of the spectrum as a donor sister, her brother passed away and their family made the courageous decision to donate his organs. 6 people were given a second chance at life, as young as 15 and as old as mid 50’s. Nancy lived through a tragedy, but their decision gave others the opportunity to live. April is donate life month, and on the 27th is the largest donate life event in the country. The Donate Life Run/Walk is held on Cal State Fullerton’s campus every year and last year there was over 11,000 participants out to support the cause. The organization needs as many volunteers as possible, and anyone can sign up at the donate life website. We are still young, but at this young age we are still able to make a difference in the world and save lives. There are so many opportunities to help this cause, we can: become an organ donor, volunteer for the run/walk, and participate in the run/walk. AMA lets make a difference, and lets save lives.
Save Lives at: http://register.donatelifecalifornia.org/AMASavesLives
Winning “Undies for the Underprivileged” Team: