“Organ donation is the biggest kind of donation. You don’t just give a new life to one person but to the entire family, when you donate organs,” said Honourable President Ram Nath Kovind at a function organised by NGO Donate Life in Surat on May 29. The function was organised to felicitate the family members of the organ donors and to express gratitude for their noble act. Also present at the function were Chief Minister of Gujarat Vijay Rupani, Governor Of Gujarat O.P. Kohli and other dignitaries.
Donate Life is an organisation that spreads awareness for the cause of organ donation, counsels the families of brain-dead patients to donate the organs and ensures that the entire process; right from organ harvesting to organ transplantation goes smoothly.
“It is not new to donate organs in Indian culture and tradition. There is a lack of awareness in India due to certain beliefs and myths. I am very happy to know that Surat stands first among the cities in Gujarat in this cause. And what the inspirers, Donate Life and the organ donors are doing is the best service to humanity,” the President further said.
Addressing the President of Donate Life, Mr. Nilesh Mandlewala and encouraging his public spirit the President ended his speech by saying, “I would like to tell you Nileshji for you and Donate Life, go ahead – not just Gujarat, the whole country is with you.”
The organisation has impacted the lives of more than 582 people through organ donation. Mr, Mandlewala said at the felicitation function, “We are here to honour the families of those organ donors who have saved many lives and inspired many others to participate in the cause of organ donation. More than 20lakh people suffer from kidney diseases every year and 2-2.5lakh patients are added to the list annually. The same situation is for people suffering from the diseases of other organs. More than 5 lakh people die every year due to non-availability of organs.”
Furthermore, he said, “Surat is leading the cause of organ donation in Gujarat in spite of non-availability transplant facilities. Donate Life has educated more than 9lakh people about organ donation. 180 organs were donated in Surat last year out of which 91 organs were donated through the efforts of Donate Life.”
At the event, Mr. Mandlewala presented an idol of Lord Ganesh to the President as a sign of respect. The President suggested that the idol of Ganesha should be placed at Donate Life, so every person who visits them get inspired to donate their organs for the time to come.
Lord Ganesha had sacrificed his head, and the head of an elephant was placed on his body, according to Indian mythology. Therefore he is a timeless symbol of this noble cause.
Speaking at the event, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said, “To motivate the family members to donate the organs during the tough time when their loved one is on the deathbed, is the difficult work that Nileshbhai and his organisation are doing. I would like to express my gratitude and congratulations for the same. Their efforts have made Gujarat proud!”
The Governor of Gujarat O.P. Kohli said, “I would like to congratulate Donate Life’s team, well-wishers, supporters and hospitals for their efforts for the noble cause of organ donation. I also congratulate the family members of organ donors. Donation is like an organ of religion in India. And a donation that saves a life is of the highest kind.”
A book to spread awareness on organ donation was also released at the function. Governor of Gujarat, O.P. Kohli released the book and presented its first copy to the President of India, Ram Nath Kovind.
A slogan from the book reads, ‘Not Everyone Has The Chance To Be God For Another; You Do’.
Here are ten facts about Donate Life, the organisation that has worked selflessly to encourage people to donate their organs and ensured that the organs reach the recipient on time:
1. Donate Life was established under the leadership of Mr. Nilesh Mandlewala and support of other trustees, Donate Life is an NGO dedicated to the noble cause of organ donation.
2. Till date, Donate Life has procured 249 kidney, 101 liver, 17 heart, 6 pancreas, 212 eyes and 4 bones. We have given a new lease of life to 582 people across India & the globe.
3. 24×7, 365 days a year we work towards the cause of organ donation. We counsel the family members of brain-dead patients to donate the organs and stay with them throughout the entire process making it hassle-free.
4. Donate Life is the pioneer for the first ever successful cadaver heart transfer and transplant in Western India. Donate Life is also the pioneer in first ever interstate heart transplant from Surat, Gujarat to Chennai, Tamil Nadu and Indore, Madhya Pradesh.
5. Donate Life is also responsible for carrying out the first-ever bone donation, successfully from Gujarat.
6. 45% of the cadaveric kidney & liver transplants at Institute Of Kidney Disease & Research Centre in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, 20% of the heart transplants at Mumbai’s Fortis Hospital have taken place due to the efforts of our organisation.
7. Also, out of the five heart transplants that have taken place at Ahmedabad’s CIMS hospital, two have been donated from Surat through Donate Life.
8. In 2017, Surat achieved a new milestone by donating the 62 kidney in one year. Surat was able to give a new lease of life to 127 persons across the country by transplantation of 9 heart, 52 kidney, 28 liver, 2 pancreas and 38 eyes was done through the efforts of Donate Life.
9. We take care of education expenses of children of cadaver donor in cases where the donor was the only earning member of the family.
10. We create a 360-degree awareness through street plays, talks shows, seminars, walkathons and media. We request various spiritual leaders to help spread awareness about organ donation to their followers.
11. We have educated more than 9 lakh people about cadaver organ donation.
12. Also, we network with organ procuring organisations in Gujarat. (IKDRC-Ahmedabad, ROTTO(Regional Organ & Tissue Transplant Organisation – Mumbai & NOTTO (National Organ & Tissue Transplant Organisation).
13. For the first time in the history of organ donation in Western India, Donate Life has been instrumental for the donation of heart of a 14 months brain-dead child from Surat which was successfully transplanted into a 3.5-year-old child at Mumbai. Similarly, organs of a 3.5-year-old brain-dead child of Surat were donated through the efforts of Donate life which gave new lease of life to three children from various cities in Gujarat.
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Watch the video of the function below: