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Legislative Update: Gift of Life in Your Community

50 Years of Heroes, Hope & Healing

Join Us In Our Life-Saving Mission

A graphic is shown in a starry night sky.

Please join Gift of Life Donor Program’s mission to give everyone on the transplant waiting list a second chance at life as we kick off a year-long commemoration of our 50th anniversary. We are the nonprofit federally-designated organ procurement organization serving 11.3 million people in the eastern half of  Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Delaware. 

Gift of Life, founded in 1974, is rallying everyone — including community and government leaders like you — to honor our 50 years of service by using your extraordinary power to say “Yes” to saving lives through donation and spread the word that donors are heroes. The critical need for life-saving organs is a public health crisis we can all help address.

Thanks to our generous community, Gift of Life has coordinated the most donors and organs for transplant of any U.S. organ procurement organization (OPO) since the inception of our national donation system in 1988.  Nearly five million people in our region are registered as organ donors. Yet the need for precious organs continues to far exceed the number available.

Our 50th anniversary will focus on increasing public awareness and donor registrations with a special campaign to sign up 5,000 new organ donors — one for each of our neighbors (your constituents) on our region’s transplant waitlist.

The impact of each donor is extraordinary:

  • One organ donor can save up to eight lives.
  • One tissue donor can heal about 100 people.

This April, National Donate Life Month, and throughout our 50th anniversary commemoration, please join us in encouraging everyone to register to become an organ, tissue and cornea donor. Please share the sample posts below with your constituents and network. For additional information, materials or speakers, please contact me directly.

Thank you for helping us save lives,
Dwendy Johnson, CVA
Community Relations Supervisor
Gift of Life Donor Program

5 Easy Ways to Celebrate

National Donate Life Month

1. Share your support for saving lives: Click here to sign up to become an organ donor. Let your family, friends and constituents know that donors are heroes with this sample social post:

2.  Donor Dash: Our signature 27th annual event will be held Sunday, April 28 at a scenic, spacious new location — the Philadelphia Navy Yard — and includes a virtual option so that supporters anywhere can help spread the inspiring message of the Dash. All participants will receive a commemorative event T-shirt. Click here for details and spread the word with this social post:

3.  Celebrate National Blue & Green Day on Friday, April 12 and help raise awareness of organ donation: Wear Donate Life colors, decorate your office or front door and dress up your pets. Share lots of photos using hashtag #BlueGreenDay and tag @donors1.

4.  Follow us on FacebookInstagram and LinkedIn, and share our inspiring stories. Scroll down for MORE sample social posts!

5.  Learn more: Read the inspiring stories below and visit donors1.org and sign up for our engaging monthly eNews, which brings inspiration and information straight to your inbox.

Waiting for a Transplant

“My Superpower is That I’m Extremely Determined”

A half million people in the U.S. are suffering from End-Stage Renal Disease, with 90,000 in need of a new kidney to survive; they are the majority of transplant waitlist patients. 

Brianna Herrera, a bright student with a passion for music, was shocked to be diagnosed with kidney failure during her senior year of high school. “Everything felt like it was crashing down on me, and I felt like I had no future,” she recalled. But Brianna persevered to become a first-generation college student majoring in music education as she waits for a transplant.

“Despite going through all of this, I am still trying to achieve my dreams. My superpower is that I am extremely determined,” Brianna said. “I know that many people don’t think about organ donation, but it helps give others an opportunity to get their life back, to keep going and I think that that’s something beautiful.” Click here for videos of Brianna and other patients waiting.

Honoring Donors & Donor Families

A Celebration of Heroes

The Gift of Life Donor Medal is a remembrance for those who helped improve the lives of others through organ, eye or tissue donation.
The Gift of Life Donor Medal is a remembrance for those who helped save the lives of others through organ, tissue or cornea donation.

Gift of Life honored 230 donor heroes and their generous families at three in-person and one virtual Life & Legacy Celebrations last fall. Our ceremony in Philadelphia was our largest ever, supporting a community of more than 400 family members, friends and Gift of Life staff who gathered to honor 92 donors. We invite you to watch this recording of our virtual ceremony.

2024 Transplant Games of America

Team Philadelphia

The 2024 Donate Life Transplant Games of America are coming up this summer and we invite you to watch our social media channels and your local media for stories of your constituents participating as part of Gift of Life’s Team Philadelphia. Transplant recipients of all ages and living donors will compete for medals as donor families and donation advocates cheer them on from July 5-10 in Birmingham, Ala. Visit our Team Philly page to learn more.

Gift of Life College Challenge

Students Save Lives

Students helped save lives across 15 campuses as part of Gift of Life’s 2023 College Challenge, registering close to 700 new organ and tissue donors and raising awareness of donation through dozens of events and activities.

Students from Temple Student Nursing Association (pictured above) won first prize, with second prize going to Chestnut Hill College and Susquehanna University receiving third prize.

The 2024 College Challenge is now under way. We thank our participating schools and encourage you to support them in their life-saving outreach:

Alvernia University 
Arcadia University
La Salle University
Millersville University
Penn State-Harrisburg
Penn State University Park
Rowan University
Shippensburg University
Susquehanna University
Temple University
University of Scranton
Villanova University

Here’s a social post to recognize College Challenge schools in your legislative district:

Spread the Word

Social Posts to Help Save Lives

Throughout the year, help save lives by using the social posts below with hashtags #donatelife and #donors1. Click here for National Donate Life Month social media images and web banners. 

Post 1

More than 100K children & adults nationally are waiting for a life-saving organ transplant. Anyone can be a potential donor regardless of age, race or medical history. It takes less than a minute to sign up at donors1.org. #donatelife #donors1

Post 2

The power of each donor is extraordinary. One organ donor can save 8 lives and a tissue donor can heal about 100 others. Sign up to become a donor hero today at donors1.org. #donatelife #donors1

Post 3

Organ donation is the ultimate act of love and generosity. Learn more and sign up today at donors1.org. #donatelife #donors1

Post 4

Someone is added to the national organ transplant list every 10 minutes; you can sign up to become a donor hero in less than one minute at donors1.org. #donatelife #donors1

Post 5

95% of Americans say they support organ donation. Get the facts and sign up today at donors1.org. #donatelife #donors1