When I was just one year old, my Uncle Paul, my dad’s youngest brother, passed away. He had been waiting for an organ donation for about eight months, waiting for a double lung donation to come through for him, but it never did. I decided to do my bar mitzvah project in my uncle’s memory. I decided to raise awareness for the need for organ donations.
As part of this, I also raised money that would go towards raising awareness. I created a virtual team for the Gift of Life organization’s 2012 Dash for Organ & Tissue Donation Awareness, a run/walk taking place in Philadelphia. I also raised awareness by sending e-mails about the Dash, and by speaking to people about the need for organ donation. Additionally, I handed out brochures and the green Donate Life awareness bracelets, and I received donations for the bracelets. I set a goal for how much money I wanted to raise, and I met that goal in just a few days. I continue to raise money, though, and have more than tripled my goal, so far.
My bar mitzvah ceremony takes place just a week after the Dash. I will be speaking about organ donation awareness at my ceremony. I also sent information to our guests, asking people to register and, if they already were registered, to pass the information on to family, friends or neighbors. Even if only one person registers because of my campaign, many lives could be saved. Of course, I hope many register. A lot of people put nice comments about organ donation awareness on their response cards, thanking me for taking on this issue for my project. Family & friends wrote me with stories of how the organ donation issue has touched them. Some people have immediate family members who have had organ transplants. Others have had family members and friends who have passed away, but whose wishes of being organ donors were carried out, making the families feel so good about helping others. I hope the work I am doing causes people to think about organ donation and to register to become organ donors. by Aaron Glatter
The Dash for Organ & Tissue Donation Awareness is a 5K run/10K run/3K walk. This is the 17th annual Dash on April 15, 2012. Visit Aaron’s virtual page at https://tinyurl.com/TeamPaulDash
Aaron Glatter’s Bar Mitzvah is on April 21, 2012, a week after the dash!