Share Your Story
Hearing about others' experiences can be helpful when dealing with death and bereavement. Do you have a personal experience that you'd feel comfortable sharing with the campaign? If so, let us know...
We lost our 21 year old daughter Beth on 30 September 2013 and it was her wish to be an organ donor.
She was a final year drama student at Northampton University. She was looking forward to graduating this year and had spoken of travelling with her university friends and setting up her own theatre company.
Sadly for Beth and us, this will not now happen but, on that tragic weekend, we as a family were able to agree to her organ donation because we had discussed the topic on numerous occasions and we understood her wishes.
Since Beth’s passing, we have been looking at organ donation sites and campaigns and while we see the emphasis is on saving or changing lives, we feel that there are two main issues, which in our opinion, are not stressed enough. Firstly, there is the importance of discussing the wish to donate among family and friends and acting on it by registering on the NHS organ donor site. Secondly, we feel that the way in which the organ donation process is handled is not clearly discussed.
We feel that the general public still feel that if you carry an organ donor card, then at the first opportunity all your organs are ripped from you and you are just treated as an empty body. This was not our family’s experience and in an attempt to be proactive in reassuring people regarding the process, we created a website for Beth www.rememberbeth.co.uk. where we tell the story of Beth’s operation. Please do have a look at Beth’s site as we just want it to be used as a positive message regarding organ donation. If in a small way we are able to encourage more families to discuss organ donation and reassure them how professionally the whole process is handled, then we can draw some comfort from our personal tragedy, especially if they then act on it and join the register.
You can sign up to be an organ donor at www.organdonation.nhs.uk.
The Dying Matters Coalition is led by the National Council for Palliative Care,
the umbrella charity for end of life care in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Freephone 08000 21 44 66