National Donate Life Month (NDLM) is about saving and healing lives through organ, eye and tissue donation. Celebrated each April, NDLM features an entire month of local, regional and national activities to raise awareness about donation, encourage Americans to register as donors and celebrate those who have saved lives through the gift of donation. This year, Carolina Donor Services is pleased to announce that our state is nearing a major milestone – almost 5 million registered donors. To reach this goal, Carolina Donor Services encourages all North Carolinians to consider the life-saving benefits of donation and sign up as an organ, eye and tissue donor today.
Each year, Carolina Donor Services works with various community groups and hospitals to celebrate NDLM with events held across the region. This year, CDS kicked off April with its Annual Appreciation Dinner, an evening to recognize and thank Friends for Life Ambassadors and community partners who are key donation advocates. Throughout the month, community and hospital-based events are planned including donor drives, donor memorials, flag-raising ceremonies, Linking Hands for Life events, a Donate Life baseball game night, a college campus carnival and a golf and dodgeball tournament.
Currently, about half of the adult population in the United States is registered as donors, including 4.89 million North Carolinians. However, the number of people in need of transplants continues to outpace the number of organs donated. More than 118,000 people, including almost 2,900 individuals in North Carolina, are waiting for a transplant and a second chance at life.* On average, 22 people die each day because the organ they need is not donated in time. Registering your decision to become a donor is the most effective way to ensure you can save lives through donation and gives hope and support to those who wait for transplants.
“We know that 95% of Americans support donation and are in favor of being a donor, but only about 50% are currently registered. So, this April, we’re focusing on bridging this gap and encouraging more people to take action by signing up on our state registry at DonateLifeNC.org/Register. We hope that by year-end, we will reach a major milestone in North Carolina – 5 million registered donors. As our registry grows, it gives hope to those waiting for the precious gift of organ, eye and tissue donation,” said Dawn Hall, Carolina Donor Services’ Director of Communications and Marketing.
For more information about how to register as a donor or how to get involved in community outreach efforts, please visit CarolinaDonorServices.org or call 1-800-200-2672.
*Data from the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) as of March 29, 2017.