Fourteen patients in the Isle of Man are waiting for organ transplants.
To promote awareness of this issue members of the Organ Donation Committee at Noble’s Hospital will be at both signing on events for the Manx Telecom Parish Walk.
They will also be running a water station during the race handing out bottles to walkers with details on labels about organ donation.
Some committee members will be taking part in the walk to raise funds for a memorial at Noble’s Hospital in memory of all those in the island who have donated organs.
The committee is made up of co-ordinators from the UK, and staff from the Noble’s Hospital and the mortuary.
One of the committee members is Diane Taylor. Her 15-year-old son Daniel died in a car accident in 2007.
After Daniel’s organs were donated, four patients got life-changing transplants.
Diane, who lives in St Jude’s and works for Manx Telecom, set up a Facebook page called ‘Organ Donation Isle of Man - The Gift of Life’ which raises awareness of organ donation.
She said: ‘Last year I took part in the Parish Walk with my best friend Shona Shade. We both walked in memory of our children [Diane’s son Daniel, and Shona’s daughter McKenzie] and also to raise awareness of organ donation in the Isle of Man.
‘This year I will be working with the committee from Noble’s Hospital and there will be a team taking part in the Parish Walk.
‘On the two signing-on nights we will be having a table with forms to sign up to the register and other promotional materials. There will also be a table at the checkpoint in Peel.
‘Organ donation is a sensitive subject, but it’s important for people to discuss and understand what’s involved. And it can make a huge difference to the lives of those in need of transplants.’
From April 2009 to February 2014 17 patients in the island received a life-saving organ transplants from a deceased donor. There are donor registers both here and in the UK. The greater the number there are who sign-up for these registers, then the greater the chances of organs being available which match the tissue-types of patients needing transplants.
For more information go to the ‘Organ Donation Isle of Man - The Gift of Life’ Facebook page, or www.organdonation.nhs.uk where you can join the NHS Organ Donor Register.