Last week was Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week in Canada and I was privileged to be part of some of the many activities. Here is the Living Green Ribbon created in Kitchener, Ontario Wednesday morning April 26th. Thanks to excellent media coverage a good crowd turned out to show their support for organ and tissue donation. It was heartwarming to see a good turnout from our lung transplant community and I can remember talking to transplant recipients Kellie Cooper, Denise Secours, Wilf Yantzi, Mike Chwastiak, Robert Brush, Jessica Mogg, Mary Kanters and many of their families, support persons and friends. (more photos from Kitchener)
For photos of all Ontario Living Green Ribbon events click here.
The media coverage never let up all week. The newspapers and TV were extremely supportive and interested in Organ and Tissue Donation. I'm sure they were motivated in great part by the many and excellent media releases from Trillium Gift of Life Network (TGLN). As an example, our local newspaper, The Record, did an interview with me and included a notice about the Living Green Ribbon. A reporter for Rogers TV read the article and sought me out for an interview.
At the Birthday Ball Wednesday evening in Toronto, many speakers talked about Organ Donation Awareness, including Dr. Frank Markel, President and CEO, Trillium Gift of Life Network and the Ontario government Minister of Health, George Smitherman.
The next day, Thursday, I participated in a panel discussion with the ICU/CCU staff at Toronto General Hospital. On Friday I manned a display at St. Mary's Hospital in Kitchener.
This just reflects my small part in the week's activities. Multiply that by the hundreds or thousands involved across the Province and I'm sure you will agree that we are starting to turn the corner and have an impact on organ and tissue donation rates.