The Delta State University Student Nurses Association is participating in the annual Mississippi Organ Recovery Agency’s Donor Challenge, a statewide outreach effort to increase awareness of the need for organ and tissue donations on college campuses. It also serves as an opportunity to secure donor designations.
This year, the campaign will expand to a record seven Mississippi campuses. Delta State’s participation in the challenge is scheduled for Oct. 13-Nov. 7 versus Mississippi College.
Students, fans, alumni, and faculty and staff of each university can register to be organ donors at any Donor Challenge registration event, or participants can sign up online at www.msora.org under the Donor Challenge banner.
Since the inaugural 2012 event, participation has continued to grow from only two rival universities in the first year. In 2014, Delta State, Alcorn State, Jackson State, University of Mississippi, Mississippi College, Mississippi State and the University of Southern Mississippi will all participate in the competition.
“Last year, when we expanded the Donor Challenge to four schools, we saw an incredible 300 percent increase in donor designations,” said Charlotte Mullinnix, director of MORA Outreach Services. “We are thrilled about the expansion of participating schools in the 2014 Donor Challenge and once again, we’re expecting another tremendous spike in people registering to be organ, eye and tissue donors.
“It’s an exciting way to increase awareness, designations and bring hope to those in need of lifesaving transplants. The Delta State University Student Nurses Association is very excited to be involved in this challenge.”
The 2014 Donor Challenge will be a three-tier competition, with rival schools going head-to-head. The schedule is as follows:
* Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Southern Miss — Sept. 15-Oct. 17
* Delta State, Mississippi College — Oct. 13–Nov. 7
* Alcorn State, Jackson State — Oct. 20-Nov. 14
The schools’ overall totals this year will reflect students and fans already registered as organ and tissue donors, if they show donor designation on licenses or donor cards at any registration event. Existing donor registrations will account for 25 percent of the total.
Additionally, MORA will donate $500 to each school for distribution among the student organization hosting the Donor Challenge, as long as the school meets the set criteria — including a minimum of one volunteer training session, four registration events and a secured minimum of 150 new donor designations.
Currently, over 1,400 Mississippians and more than 123,000 Americans are in need of a lifesaving transplant. A new patient is added to the national transplant waiting list every 10 minutes, and an average of 18 people die each day waiting for a lifesaving transplant that never arrives.
To register as an organ and tissue donor, visit www.donatelifems.org.
Additional organ donation facts:
*One organ donor can save eight lives.
*One tissue donor can enhance the lives of more than 50 people.
For more information, contact Debra Allen, faculty advisor, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 662-846-4261.