Letter from Bill Chapple OBE re Organ Donation Week

Just two minutes of your time could literally save someone else’s life.

I know that to be true, because that is what happened to me three years ago when my own life was saved by the unselfishness of a woman who had chosen to become an organ donor.

I had been given roughly two weeks to live due to non-alcoholic cirrhosis caused by a fatty liver.

Then a woman in her late 50s died suddenly and I was given her liver. I don’t know who she was because we are not allowed to know – but without her, I wouldn’t be here today and wouldn’t have been able to give my daughter away in marriage, or met any of my young grandchildren. Nor would I have gone on to enjoy one of the greatest years of my life last year as Chairman of Buckinghamshire County Council.

My story may be familiar to some readers but I am repeating it today because we are in Organ Donation Week. Registering to become a donor is very simple and takes about two minutes of form filling.

However, I understand that although eight out of 10 people support organ donation, half the adults in England have NEVER talked to anyone about donating their organs when they die.

People give many reasons for not having talked about it. Some of the most common are that it didn’t come up, that people don’t really want to talk about death, or that they just haven’t got round to it yet.

Organ donation is indeed a delicate subject to bring up with your family, but talking about it is easier than you think. I would encourage readers to click on this website to sign up: http://bit.ly/2bRx1uC or call 0300 123 23 23.

?Meanwhile, I am using my own experiences to encourage friends and colleagues to join the register, and hope you will support the campaign.

Hopefully, you won’t need an organ transplant, but if the worst were to happen, wouldn’t it be comforting to know that in your hour of need someone else’s donated organ had saved your life? Would you be willing to do the same for someone else…?

Bill Chapple OBE,

Buckinghamshire County Councillor for Aston Clinton