National day to honour organ and tissue donors and their families has been set for Sunday 22 November.

Minister for Rural Health, Fiona Nash has asked Australians to reflect on the gift of organ donation this week ahead of DonateLife Thank You Day next Sunday.

DonateLife Thank You Day is a national day to honour organ and tissue donors and their families and thank them for their selfless gift.

“Organ and tissue donors, and the families who honour their wishes to donate, save lives,” Minister Nash said.

“Organ and tissue donation is the ultimate gift, with just one organ and tissue donor able to improve the lives of more than ten people.

“The gift of organ and tissue donation benefits not just transplant recipients, but their families, friends and society in general.

“For those waiting for a transplant, organ and tissue donation can mean the difference between life and death, being healthy and sick, between seeing and being blind, or being active and never walking again. It enables people to resume an active life in their family, their workplace, their school and their community.

“It is important to acknowledge and honour the role that families play in the donation process. They are asked to confirm the donation decision of their loved one and also provide vital health information. Donor families also help the broader community understand the donation process by generously sharing their stories with the public,” Minister Nash said.

Donor Families Australia Chairman Bruce McDowell said DonateLife Thankyou Day was a great initiative.

“It means a lot to the families of donors to know that our loved one’s gifts are valued by recipients and the wider community.  This open display of gratitude gives us much pride and we appreciate the Organ and Tissue Authority’s initiative in making this day happen.”

On DonateLife Thank You Day, Australians are invited to participate by:

  • Creating a thank you video message and sharing it via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, using the #DonateLifeThankYouDay hashtag
  • Registering as an organ and tissue donor on the Australian Organ Donor Register at donatelife.gov.au/decide
  • Starting a conversation or sharing your decision about organ donation with your family and friends.

A video featuring donor families and transplant recipients can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVEjVhl5dxQ

For more information about DonateLife Thank You Day and how you can get involved, visit donatelife.gov.au/thank-you-day.