Back in the summer the Yorkshire Post launched a campaign to encourage people to put themselves on to the organ donor register after it was discovered that only 114 people in Yorkshire had consented to organ donation. Currently it is estimated that 800 people in Yorkshire alone are awaiting lifesaving transplants.

Organ donation is a subject close to our hearts. Joel Malyon, son of Polly one of our team here at Riccall Care, was an inspiring little boy who was born with a rare condition called Posterior urethral valves (PUV). Joel received a kidney transplant supported by the transplant team at the Paediatric Renal Ward team at Leeds General Infirmary and went on to take part in the annual British Transplant Games to highlight organ donation. Winner of a York Press Community Pride Award, sadly, due to further complications Joel died before he could receive his award. He was just 7 years’ old. We know how much of a lifeline organ donation is for the many young people and adults waiting for a matched organ, it’s a real gift of life.

Following the launch of the ‘Be A Hero’ campaign led by Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (LTH), Yorkshire has responded and in the last three months alone an amazing 27,000 people have joined the NHS Organ Donor Register. Yet, there is more to be done. It’s difficult to believe that in the UK three people die every day waiting for an organ transplant.

Geoffrey Boycott, cricket commentator and former Yorkshire and England cricketer is right behind the campaign…

“It’s all too easy for people to presume that because they’ve not always had a clean bill of health or they are no longer in their 20s there isn’t anything worth keeping and passing on to someone else, but that’s far from true. The Be A Hero campaign aims to raise awareness that we all, regardless of age, have the potential to be a hero, and ability to save up to nine lives. I hope, just as I have been, many people in Yorkshire will be inspired by this remarkable campaign to take two minutes to sign the donor register.”

Clinical lead for organ donation at Leeds Teaching Hospital, Dr Simon Flood: “We hope to get Yorkshire signed up so that in the future, everyone who needs an organ will get one in time.”

Find out more and sign up to the Organ Donation Register.