COLUMBUS, Ohio, March 29, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Countless groups sponsor Fun Runs, Charity Walks or 5Ks to help raise awareness for a cause, but this April, hundreds of Ohioans will take a stand for a critical issue — by sitting down. April 1-6, the first six days of National Donate Life Month, Ohio's organ, eye and tissue recovery organizations will host 24-hour "Green Chair" sit-ins across the state to initiate conversations about the need for registered organ, eye and tissue donors in Ohio.
The thought of seeing an empty chair where a loved one once sat across the dinner table or in the family room is heartbreaking. But for families of the more than 3,350 Ohioans awaiting a life-saving transplant, that fear is real. Statistically, one Ohioan dies every other day because an organ transplant didn't come in time. "Don't Let Another Chair Go Empty!" is the rallying cry of Donate Life Ohio's Green Chair Campaign imploring all Ohioans to join the Ohio Donor Registry to help ensure that fewer chairs go empty. And in April, across five cities, they will do just that.
For 24 hours, families who lost a loved one waiting, transplant recipients, donor families, patients awaiting life-saving organ transplants and others connected to the cause will take turns sitting in the Donate Life Ohio Green Chair to share their stories. During each round-the-clock event, the Donate Life Ohio Green Chair will literally not go empty. Through their efforts, donation advocates hope that more Ohioans will be inspired to register as organ, eye and tissue donor and help save lives.
The 24-hour events are scheduled for the following dates and times:
Friday, April 1, 12:00 p.m. – Saturday, April 2, 11:59 a.m.
Life Connection of Ohio, 40 Wyoming St., Dayton, OH 45409
Saturday, April 2, 12 a.m. – 11:59 p.m.
Lifeline of Ohio, 770 Kinnear Rd., Columbus, OH 43212
Monday, April 4, 8:00 a.m. – Tuesday, April 5, 7:59 a.m.
LifeCenter, 615 Elsinore Place, Suite 400, Cincinnati, OH 45202
Monday, April 4, 10 a.m. – Tuesday, April 5, 9:59 a.m.
WKYC-TV, 1333 Lakeside Ave., Cleveland, OH 44114
Tuesday, April 5, 9 a.m. – Wednesday, April 6, 8:59 a.m.
WTOL-TV, 730 N. Summit St., Toledo, OH 43604
In February 2011, the Ohio Donor Registry exceeded 5 million registered organ, eye and tissue donors for the first time since its inception in 2002. But even with millions of people registered, 176 Ohioans died in 2010 waiting for a transplant that didn't come in time, and the list of patients in need of a life-saving transplant continues to grow. Increasing the total number of registered donors in Ohio will help reduce the time critical patients must wait for a transplant, and help diminish the number who will die waiting.
Friends of the Donate Life Ohio cause can also host their own virtual sit-ins on Facebook. Through the new Donate Life Ohio Facebook Application, anyone can create their own Green Chair avatar and hold a one-hour online sit-in to share their decision to be an organ donor with friends and family.
Additionally, more than 100 Kroger pharmacies in the Columbus, Toledo and Dayton areas will help Ohioans show their support by distributing 25,000 free Green Chair lapel pins during National Donate Life Month.
"Whether they sit in our Green Chair, create their own online, or wear a chair on their heart, Ohioans can help make sure that fewer chairs go empty and more lives are saved and healed through organ, eye and tissue donation," Carol Greentree, chair of the Second Chance Trust Fund, said. "Joining the Ohio Donor Registry is as easy as saying 'yes' when renewing a driver's license or completing an online form www.DonateLifeOhio.org."
About Donate Life Ohio
Donate Life Ohio is a coalition of the state's organ, eye and tissue recovery agencies dedicated to educating Ohioans about the need for organ and tissue donation. In this effort to increase donor registrations, they are joined by the Ohio Department of Health, the Ohio Department of Public Safety and the Minority Organ and Tissue Transplant Education Program. For more information, please visit www.DonateLifeOhio.org.
About Second Chance Trust Fund
Through contributions made by individuals at Ohio's BMVs while receiving or renewing their Ohio driver's licenses or state identification cards, the Second Chance Trust Fund finances educational and action-oriented campaigns like the Do It Now!™ program. A $1 contribution supports donation education in Ohio and gives hope to thousands of Ohioans waiting for a second chance through organ, eye and tissue donation.
Ohio Organ Procurement Organizations
LifeCenter Organ Donor Network, Cincinnati
Andi Johnson, Director of Public Affairs
513.558.5555 office / 513.315.1785 cell
Lifebanc, Cleveland, Akron, Canton, Youngstown
Chuck Heald, Director of Community Outreach
216.820.4822 office / 216.272.5738 cell
Lifeline of Ohio, Columbus
Marilyn Pongonis, Director of Communications
614.384.7330 office / 614.580.0393 cell
Life Connection of Ohio, Dayton
Cathi Arends, Director of Community Relations
937.223.8223 office / 937.657.5596 cell
Life Connection of Ohio, Toledo
Kara Steele, Director of Community Relations
419.893.1618 office / 419.346.0066 cell
SOURCE Donate Life Ohio