My family has a heredity history of Polycystic Kidney Disease but I thought that taking care of myself might lower my risk. Unfortunately, that did not prevent my kidneys from failing. Thus, I am need of a living kidney donor. I appreciate those of you who read my posts and send me good wishes. They really do help!
Looking for a kidney donor is a challenging task. In general, it’s hard for the person in need of a kidney to discuss their situation. Therefore, to be successful, that person often needs a point person – a champion if you will – to help spread the message. My husband is that person for me. This search is challenging and has required a lot of education on our part.
There are numerous organizations that can provide tools to conduct this vital search. The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) calls the search “The Big Ask/The Big Give” and has valuable information for both the champion and the person considering a donation. The NKF also sponsors fundraising events – like kidney walks – to fund the fight against kidney disease.
Another organization, Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, has taken that education for this champion a bit further. The program has initiated a Live Donor Champion Program which provides the designated champion with resources and education to make him or her more effective during the search for donors. Through meetings and other resources, this program aims to teach the champion how to use personal connections and social networks to increase awareness about the need for kidney donors as well as how to identify potential donors.
While we don’t live near Johns Hopkins, we hope to utilize some of their tools in our search for a donor. Hopefully, our luck will change!
While it is a big decision to donate a kidney, living donors can save lives. If you think it might be something that you are interested in, you can best help us by calling us at 770-310-2426 for info to do a 15-minute phone screening on being a living donor. You can also call the St. Luke’s Transplant Department directly to do the screening at 832-355-4100. Just tell them your planned recipient is Dominique (Nikki) Brooks.
Be Inspired — Give Life!
Dominique (Nikki) Brooks