A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Kentucky’s organ donation awareness programs capture three national awards in Oregon

Kentucky’s organ donation awareness programs captured three national awards this year at the convention in Portland, Oregon — both the Youth Education and Innovation Creativity Awards from Donate Life America, as well as the Groundbreaker Award from the American Association for Tissue Banks.

The awards are in recognition of the creation of an innovative mobile app for school challenges, Bridge2Life KY, which was developed by the community outreach team of the Kentucky Circuit Court Clerks’ Trust For Life and Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates. Its focus is to engage and educate today’s youth by utilizing something they all have in common, technology, particularly as it relates to social media, and to support the effort to encourage more Kentuckians to join the Organ Donor Registry.

Kentucky’s organ donation awareness programs captured three national awards this year at the convention in Oregon.

The team implemented a simultaneous statewide high school partnership and challenge with KY HOSA (Health Occupation Students of America) and KY FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America) clubs, and challenged each club to register at least five new people a day during the one-month period. High school students are young, creative and love social media, and with this in mind they were encouraged to perform certain activities and share on social platforms for which they received points.

The school that had the most registries and points at the end of the month won the competition. This activity promoted a culture of donation and encouraged them to be involved, use the Bridge2Life app to obtain information and enable them to register to become a donor on the spot.

The results: 1,092 new registries, a record number for a membership drive; 5,000 high school students educated about organ and tissue donation; and participation from 17 schools throughout the state.

“The innovative efforts of the team to encourage and empower Kentuckians to register as organ and tissue donors will help save, and heal, lives throughout the Commonwealth. And those efforts would not have been possible without our partners, all of who joined together to make a positive and profound impact on this mission,” said Crysta McGee, community educator. “From the Kentucky’s Circuit Court Clerks’ educational initiatives at driver’s license renewal locations statewide, to biotechnology company Bridge to Life’s sponsorship of the project, and our donor family and recipient volunteers who inspire us all, this is something we, and all Kentuckians, can truly be proud of.”

From Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates

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