Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Save Jess-tival and an Award!


I really can't wait... I've been trying to do my little bit in helping to organise it, not sure I am being much help but I am trying! Ha Ha! Have received a few raffle prizes so thats a good start and I have sent off 8 letters to companies today in the hope that some of them will offer some raffle prizes too!


In other news I have won a regional Vinspired award and today I also found out that I have been shortlisted for the Vinspired National Award, under the campaigning catagory (It's called the Shout Award.) My university got in touch (before the national bit of news) and said they wanted to write a press release about it to send to local papers, here is a copy if you are interested:

PM-backed Organ Donor campaigner scoops award.

A kidney transplant patient, who spearheaded a high-profile nationwide campaign to boost Organ Donation, is in line to win a prestigious national award recognising the impact of her volunteering.

Holly Shaw, who will graduate in Early Childhood Studies from the University of Chester this November, will travel to the O2 Arena in London next month for the vInspired National Awards, after winning a regional vInspired Award for her prolific campaigning.

Holly, from Westbrook in Warrington, underwent a kidney transplant in October last year, having spent more than three years undergoing regular dialysis while she waited for the phone call that changed her life.

During her time on the transplant waiting list, she set up the Gift of Life campaign to encourage people to sign the Organ Donor register, and from humble beginnings the initiative has sprung to national prominence.

During a national Donor Day earlier this year, Holly appeared on GMTV and Sky News, and even received a personal message of support from Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, as her endeavours prompted 3,200 people to sign up to be Organ Donors. The PM also suggested a meeting at a later date to discuss her campaign further.

Since then, Holly’s campaign has continued. She spent six months with a camera crew making a documentary for Channel 4 as part of the television channel’s Battlefront initiative, and remains an advocate for the Live Life Then Give Life charity, which supports those waiting for transplants and provides post-transplant support.

Holly, said: “I’m very excited about going to the Awards Ceremony in London. I wasn’t expecting to win the regional prize, so this is fantastic news. I started campaigning before my transplant and I’m not going to stop now, it has made a massive difference to my life.

“People take so many things for granted, like being able to eat and drink what they want and going for a day out. Thanks to the generosity of the donor and their family, my life has changed and I can now enjoy these things.

“Organ Donation is something I feel passionately about and I’m thrilled to be able to spread the word. Fortunately my story has a happy ending, but that isn’t always the case due to the shortage of Organ Donors in the UK.

“I was given the gift of life and I’ll always be eternally grateful for that. I’m living life to the full and I’ll never stop campaigning.”

Every year, more than 1,000 people die due to the lack of donor organs for transplant. More than 9,000 people in the UK are currently on the transplant waiting list, so statistically people are more likely to need a transplant than become a donor – only 26% of the population are on the Organ Donor register.

Next month, Holly will celebrate the year since her transplant by taking part in an abseil at Wirral’s Leasowe Lighthouse to raise money for Life Life Then Give Life. To sponsor her, visit www.justgiving.com/LLTGL-abseil

For more information about Holly’s campaign, visit www.thegiftoflife.org.uk

For information about becoming an organ donor, visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk

I don't do what I do for awards or recognition, but it is nice to feel that I am doing some good and someone appreciates me.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Holly, what you are doing is so important. Raising awareness is the key because so many people live in ignorance about the very difficult problems that others are going through. I also applaud your spirit of giving back. My friend Bobby has the same instinct, but for different reasons. He has had two transplants and the last kidney stopped working about a year ago. He has had a very hard time since then. If you would visit our blog and leave a word of encouragement, he would really appreciate it, especially coming from someone who has lived what he is going through. Also, if you have any suggestions about how he could raise awareness about kidney diseases, we would love to hear it.

    Congratulations on your award, it seems well deserved.