"It is a privilege to guide
Gift of Hope on our lifesaving mission. Join us in offering
hope and life to others as a
Kevin Cmunt, Gift of Hope President/CEO
"Because of my donor, I now have a future with my husband and my cherished daughter, Chloe, whom we named after my selfless donor to honor her legacy."
Melissa Simon, Heart Recipient and Donation Advocate
"My brother gave the gift of life to others through donation. Now I give to others to honor his gift."
Sandra Noriega, Donor Family Member and Volunteer
"I strive to make a difference in the people's lives by supporting the faith-based decision to donate life through donation."
Father Claudio Diaz, Catholic Priest and Donation Advocate
"Our grassroots efforts help to increase donation rates in the African-American community."
LouEster Petty, Donation Advocate and AATF President
Our mission is simple: to save and enhance the lives of as
many people as possible through organ and tissue donation.
Time to Celebrate National Donate Life Month
We invite you to observe and celebrate National Donate Life Month throughout April. During this special time, we unite with our Donate Life Illinois partners, hospitals, schools, businesses and communities throughout the Illinois and northwest Indiana to educate the public about organ and tissue donation and encourage people to register as donors. We also recognize donors, their families, transplant recipients and the healthcare professionals who help provide the gift of life through donation and transplantation.
We Invite You to Read 30 Stories in 30 Days
As part of our National Donate Life Month celebration and observance, we are sharing a story a day throughout April as part of our month-long 30 Stories in 30 Days Campaign. These moving stories feature donor families, transplant recipients, living donors and other Advocates for Hope volunteers who have been touched by the lifesaving gifts provided through organ and tissue donation. We invite you to follow along each day by visiting the Gift of Hope Blog to read these touching stories of hope and life.
Record Performance for Gift of Hope in 2013
We provided a record 919 lifesaving organs for transplant in 2013 through the generous decisions of 323 donors and their families. In addition, 1,487 donors and their families authorized the donation of tissue for transplant. These achievements underscore the dedication of our healthcare partners in our joint efforts to honor the donation decision and bring lifesaving transplants to people in need. But none of this would have been possible without the selfless decisions made by individuals and families to offer hope to others through donation.
Donate Life Float Lights Up 2014 Rose Parade
Transplant recipient Linda Ramos and donor Teddy Deterding were honored on the 11th annual Donate Life Float that appeared in the Rose Parade on New Year's Day. Linda was one of 30 float riders who are all transplant recipients. Teddy was depicted in a floragraph, one of 81 that adorned the float, themed "Light Up the World." The parade was televised around the world to an estimated viewing audience of 40 million people. Click below to learn more about Linda, Teddy and the Donate Life Float.
New Connections Spotlights "Life Savers"
Our latest Connections community newsletter, shines the spotlight on our 2013 Lifesaving Partners Award honorees and what they have done to go "above and beyond" to help make donation happen. We also provide a recap of our annual donor family tribute, update you on our involvement in the 2014 Rose Parade and the Donate Life Float, provide the latest hospital performance metrics and state of donation data, and share the story of an Advocates for Hope volunteer who has truly become a "winner" by being a "loser."
3Q13 Hospital Performance Data Now Available
We are now posting donation activity data for donor hospitals so you can monitor your performance on four key metrics and see how you compare with other hospitals. The data show rankings by organ donors, donation conversion rate, authorization rate and timely notification rate. Our latest data posting shows hospital performance through the third quarter of 2013. Additional updates will be posted quarterly throughout the year. We encourage you to review the reports with your Gift of Hope Donation Coordinator.
AATF Promotes Donation with Telethon
Our African-American Task Force helped bring the donation message to Chicago-area TV viewers by taking part in the You Can Make a Difference Telethon, which aired on WJYS-TV. Micah Materre of WGN-TV was one of several celebrity emcees for the event, much of which was taped at Gift of Hope. The telethon featured donation advocate and Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman and interviews with Secretary of State Jesse White, donor families and recipients, everyday citizens who gave their views on donation.
Donor Parents Honor Son with $2,000 Gift
Atkinson, Ill., residents Bob and Sherry Wechsler presented us with financial donations totaling $2,000 in 2013 to honor the memory of their son, Crist, a donor whose gifts have benefitted more than 100 people since his death in 2004. The financial gift comes from the proceeds of It's Magic, a cookbook that Bob, a trained chef and former restaurant owner, has published to share his "customer favorite" and other recipes developed over the years. The Wechslers are splitting all book sale profits between Gift of Hope and Lifesource, the OPO serving Minnesota. We will use the gift to support our programs to educate the public about organ and tissue donation.
Gift of Hope Receives $5,000 Donation
The Donna Frett Organ Donation Foundation has donated $5,000 to us in memory of Dustin Rozmenoski and Alex Baer, two young men who gave the gift of life through organ donation. Donna, an Advocates for Hope volunteer for Gift of Hope, received Dustin's liver in 2005 after his death in a traffic accident at 23. Alex died in a longboarding accident at 16 and gave life to others with his selfless gifts. Donna's foundation honors Dustin's gift and legacy and works to raise public awareness of the importance of being a registered donor. The financial gift will be used support our ongoing efforts to educate the public about donation.
Soldier Honors Friend During World Travels
During his recent deployment, Army Staff Sgt. Erik Tofte carried a Donate Life flag to Africa, the Mideast, Europe and Southeast Asia and displayed it to honor college friend Cameron Chana, who saved and enhanced more than 30 people’s lives as an organ and tissue donor. Erik took photos of himself with the Donate Life flag during his travels and recently presented the flag and a photo book to Cameron’s parents, Robert and Lori Chana. The Chicago Tribune and The Doings newspapers have chronicled Erik’s story.
Watch Our Inspirational “Life Song” Video
Our creative video blends words, music and images into a high-impact visual tool designed to generate a social media “buzz” about organ and tissue donation and inspire people to register as donors. Life Song conveys the messages that we’re all born with our own “life song” that changes and evolves throughout our lives and concludes when we reach our “grand finales.” And that organ and tissue donation can let you keep the beat going and help others’ melodies keep playing once yours has faded.