April designated as Donate Life Month
April is Donate Life Month, and there's a waiting list of thousands of people who need an organ to save their life.
Across the country, there is a great need for organ donors.
There are more than 118,000 people nationally, waiting for the gift of life.
Those effects are felt here, too, in the tri-state region.
"The state of Iowa, for instance, has a little over 700 people that are in need of a life saving transplant, so by having a donor awareness month, it actually brings people back to that awareness that there's a need out there for organ donation," says John Jorgensen, Donation Services Coordinator for Iowa Donor Network.
Each year's campaign through Donate Life America and the Iowa Donor Network centers around a small object.
This year's symbol is a pinwheel.
"They're kind of round and the wind blows them around and around, and life goes on and on and on. And through this pinwheel, it shows that life just continues in this fashion that one can give to the other and helps carry it around," says Jorgensen.
The most common organ needed for donation is a kidney, followed by the liver, heart, and lungs.
Some organs, like the kidneys, can be donated from a living donor in good health.
"It might only take one, and it can save the lives of eight. It only takes one tissue donor to enhance the lives of three hundred. There's a lot of things that can happen just from one person saying yes," says Jorgensen.
This year, 67% of Iowa residents are registered organ donors.
Jorgensen hopes to see that number increase as the awareness increases.
If you want to register to be an organ donor, you can visit www.donatelife.net and sign up.