A public-spirited Brent resident, Dela Idowu is staging a get-together event aimed at recognizing the notable selfless acts of United Kingdom’s (UK’s) Black living organ donors on 18th May at the Holiday Inn, London through the charity Gift of Living Donation (GOLD)
In the sumptuous settings of this four-star hotel, living donors, their families, dignitaries, well-wishers and other invited guests will enjoy a superb meal whilst having the opportunity to share stories and anecdotes of their living donation experiences.
Explaining her motivation for this exercise Dela said, “I was guided by the scripture ‘I can do all things through Jesus Christ who strengthens me’ to conceive and organise this event. As a Christian I was guided by the faith that we are here for a purpose and after I came forward as a donor and was not successful I wanted to use that experience to help others.”
A statement by Mr Tayo Idowu said that the charity, Gift of Living Donation (GOLD) works tirelessly with the NHS and various other partners to increase awareness of organ donation and living donation in particular.
According to her, “l found my calling which was to help other people with kidney failure have a better quality of life by having a living transplant and not spending years on dialysis. The night will be an opportunity to recognise and celebrate their acts of bravery and kindness. It will be a truly inspirational event.”
One of those being recognised is Londoner Vickie Gordon who was inspired by the words of filmmaker Spike Lee to donate a kidney to her husband Wayne after watching health deteriorate over many years.
Lisa Burnapp, Lead Nurse Living Donation, NHS Blood Transplant said: “I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the success of living donation and the difference it makes to people’s lives. ‘Seeing is believing’. This appreciation dinner is a fantastic opportunity to say thank you to everyone who has donated but also to inspire others who may wish to consider donating a kidney.”
Statistics reveal that the number of living organ donors from the black community is declining, mirroring the trend across all ethnicities. Last year 17 black people donated kidneys as living donors, less than half the figure of five years earlier.
In contrast there are currently 632 black people waiting for a transplant with the vast majority in need of a kidney. Sadly, last year 31 patients from black backgrounds died waiting for a transplant.
The event aims to raise awareness of organ donation in Black community and the need for more Black donors especially since organ donation legislation has received royal assent.