‘Thank You’ Rose Planting Event Celebrates the Gift of Life

02 Aug 17

DonateLife Week 2017 has been marked with the planting of a ‘Thank You’ Rose bush to pay respect to organ donors who gave the ultimate gift, and to show the appreciation of local NSW North Coast organ recipients.

Nationals Member for Cowper Luke Hartsuyker attended today’s rose planting at the North Coast Regional Botanic Garden, alongside local dignitaries, organ recipients and organ donation advocates.

“Today was a touching display of respect and appreciation to all those who gave their organs so those in need could live, including several organ recipients who joined us today,” Mr Hartsuyker said.

“Just speaking with the recipients, you see what their gift means to them. By taking a minute and registering to become an organ donor, you could give up to 10 people this ultimate gift.

“There aren’t enough registered organ donors in Australia – it’s as simple as that. Only 1 in 3 Australians are registered organ donors and we’ve got to do better than that.

“Approximately 1,400 people nationwide are on organ waiting lists and by registering, we are giving these individuals and their family a better and better chance of receiving the organ they so desperately need.

In attendance was local artist and organ transplant recipient, Marcus Sims, who brought with him some of the organ donation inspired artwork for which he has been recognised.

Mr Sims’ sculptural artwork has been selected for display in an exhibit at Trial Bay Gaol, where he hopes it will start discussions about organ donor registration.

In 2013, Marcus Sims received a liver transplant and from then on, he has used his art to promote organ donor registration, including his piece entitled “With Roadside Assistance” which is a restored 1914 ‘T’ model truck completed using ‘donated’ parts.

“It’s great to see Marcus using his artistic talent to raise awareness for an important cause like organ donor registration, and I hope his restored Model T prompts people to explore becoming an organ donor,” Mr Hartsuyker added.

Mr Sims’ piece will be displayed at the ‘Sculpture in the Gaol’ exhibit at Trial Bay Gaol, from August 6.

To register to become an organ donor, visit donatelife.gov.au.

Anyone wanting to participate in the DonateLife motorcycle ride from Coffs Harbour to Port Macquarie on August 5th can register, via the registration form, at lukehartsuyker.com.au/ride. The event will be capped at 50 participants, so register today to secure your place.

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