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Renewing her pledge to raise awareness

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It’s hard to believe we are already more than halfway through the first month of this new year.

With every new year, people make New Year’s resolutions. One of my resolutions this year is to promote the need and importance of becoming an organ donor even more than I did last year. My goal is to get more Manitobans to sign up to become organ donors at  signupforlife.ca

We all need to realize the importance of becoming organ donors — how it really affects all of us and not just people like me, who are waiting for an organ.

When people need an organ, they are placed on a waiting list until their match comes up. For the lucky and easy to match, this can a short wait. For someone like me, waiting can become an ordeal.

The one lucky thing for everyone on the waiting list for a kidney is that they don’t have to wait for a deceased donor to find matches. You can receive what is called a living donor kidney. This is a procedure whereby a living person donates one of his or her own kidneys to someone, either a loved one or a stranger.

The majority of us are born with two kidneys (there are some exceptions) but we can live and function perfectly normally with only one kidney. This is why some people decide to give one of their own kidneys away. It’s a truly exceptional thing to do.

People n wait lists to receive other organs have to rely on people who have decided to give their organs away when they can no longer use them. Again, the simple act of signing a donor card or signing up online is an exceptional and truly unselfish thing to do. Which is why it is so important to become an organ donor.

If you think about this, it can also help you or a loved one in the future. The more people who sign up, the more lives will be saved.

If, in the future, you or a loved one  are suddenly in need of an organ (and yes this can happen to you) let’s hope there will be one to save your life or someone you love.

Please go to signupforlife.ca and help save a life.

Jennifer Laferriere is a community correspondent for Garden City.

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