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U.S. Government Information on Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation
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National Events

January: National Volunteer Blood Donor Month
A time to highlight the importance of giving life through the donation of blood and to honor past and present donors and encourage new ones. The theme, Give Blood…The Gift of Life, is as constant as the need for blood.

February 14: National Donor Day
Focused on five points of life: organs, tissues, marrow, platelets, and blood. Many nonprofit health organizations sponsor blood and marrow drives and organ/tissue sign-ups across the nation. National Donor Day was started in 1998 by the Saturn Corporation and its United Auto Workers partners with the support of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and many nonprofit health organizations.

April: National Donate Life Month
Organ procurement organizations, transplant centers, national donation organizations and other organizations sponsor special awareness events and donor recognition ceremonies to promote donation awareness and registration. National Donate Life Month was established in 2003. Every day in April, people across the U.S. make a special effort to celebrate the tremendous generosity of those who have saved lives by becoming organ, tissue, marrow, and blood donors and to encourage more Americans to follow their fine example.

July: National Donor Recognition Ceremony & Workshop (July 15-17, 2011)
Donors and their families from across the country are honored in the Nation's Capital by the Federal government and the transplant community for giving the Gift of Life. Includes Saturday workshops and a donor recognition ceremony on Sunday. More about Donor Recognition Ceremony & Workshop

July: U.S. Transplant Games (even-numbered years)
At the games, organized and presented by the National Kidney Foundation and its many Affiliates/Divisions, transplant recipients compete in Olympic-style athletic events and celebrate the life-enabling gifts of organ and tissue donors. Medals are awarded to winning transplant recipient athletes. Living donors and donor family members receive medals of a different kind at separate recognition ceremonies. The Transplant Games illustrate the ability of transplantation to extend and enhance life.

August 1-7: National Minority Donor Awareness Week
Heightened minority-focused outreach activities bring accurate donation messages to minority communities, encouraging donor registration and promoting healthy living and disease prevention to decrease the need for transplantation. Observances have included prayer breakfasts, health walks, and donor drives. More about National Minority Donor Awareness Week

November: National Marrow Awareness Month
A special nationwide effort to recruit volunteer marrow, blood stem cell, and umbilical cord blood donors and to increase patient awareness of the option of unrelated transplantation.

> Find out more

November: National Donor Sabbath
On Friday through Sunday, two weekends before Thanksgiving, faith communities across the Nation focus on the critical need for organs, tissues, marrow, and blood, and their life-enhancing capabilities. Faith leaders and donation professionals lead discussions of issues concerning donation, and faith communities sponsor donation awareness activities, donor registrations, and speakers during this 3-day celebration of life.

> Find out more


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